June 04, 2012

Wang named dean of Applied Sciences and Arts

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A researcher and administrator at Southern Polytechnic State University (SPSU) will become the next dean of the College of Applied Sciences and Arts at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Ju An (Andy) Wang (pronounced Wong) is professor and chair of the Department of Information Technology at SPSU in Marietta, Ga.  He will begin his duties at SIU Carbondale on July 1, subject to ratification by the SIU Board of Trustees.

Wang will replace Terry A. Owens, who has served as the college’s interim dean since April 2009.

“Dr. Wang is an accomplished teacher and administrator, and he shares our focus on student success,” Chancellor Rita Cheng said.  “I look forward to welcoming him to our leadership team.”

Wang said he was attracted to SIU Carbondale and the College of Applied Sciences and Arts (CASA) “by the strong belief that I can make a difference here.”

“I have been teaching and working in various universities, both within the USA and abroad, and I have a strong feeling that SIU Carbondale is the place to be,” Wang said, pointing to his successful administrative experience in increasing enrollment, retention and graduation rates.

Wang is founding director of SPSU’s Center for Information Security Education, which he developed in 2004.  The Center earned designation in 2008 by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education.  That is the same designation that SIU Carbondale’s School of Information Systems and Applied Technologies earned last year.

Wang began at Southern Polytechnic State University as an associate professor in the Department of Software Engineering in 2001. Prior to that, Wang was an assistant professor in the Department of Computer Science and Information Systems at the University of Nebraska at Kearney from 1997 to 2001.  Previous experience includes serving as an assistant professor in the Department of Computer and Information Science at the University of Macau from 1993 to 1997.

Wang earned his doctorate in computer science from Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics in Beijing, China, in 1992.  He earned his Master of Science in Computer Science from Changsha Institute of Technology in Changsha, China, in 1989, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Applied Mathematics, with Computer Science concentration, in 1982.

Trained as a computer scientist, Wang said his research centers on software engineering.  He has a book published on component-oriented programming, and has recently focused on information security, distance learning and computing education, he said.

Wang said he is excited by the opportunities available to faculty and students within CASA.

“We have outstanding faculty and motivated students along with unique degree programs,” he said.  “I look forward to working with the senior leadership team, the superb faculty and staff to move CASA to the next level.”

Wang said his vision for the college during the next five years includes: identifying and establishing new degree programs with high-market demand; increasing college enrollment to a reasonable level; improving CASA’s research profile and seeking more external grants; establishing a doctoral program collaborating with other colleges; and 100 percent accreditation of degree programs and a high percentage of student licensures.

“The first thing I would like to do is talk to all the people involved including faculty, staff, students and advisory board,” he said.  “I want to understand what their goals are, and make sure they have the right resource they need to be more successful.  I will make sure that everybody has the opportunity to be fully engaged, and that different perspectives are solicited and discussed so that we can obtain some level of consensus and good decisions are made.”

Wang’s wife, Yan Zhou, has master’s degrees in both applied math and mathematical statistics, and has been teaching mathematics at both undergraduate and graduate levels.  The couple’s daughter, Alice, graduated from college two years ago and is working in New York, and their son, Carson, will enter eighth grade this fall.