New dean named for Kennesaw State’s engineering college

KENNESAW, Ga. | Mar 22, 2019

Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology to welcome new leadership

Ian Ferguson
Ian Ferguson

Kennesaw State University President Pamela Whitten and Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs Kathy Schwaig have named Ian Ferguson as dean of the Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology (SPCEET), effective August 15.

Ferguson currently serves as professor of electrical and computer engineering at Missouri University of Science and Technology, where he also served as dean and vice provost for the university’s College of Engineering and Computing. He was integral in the creation of the university’s engineering school, recently recognized by the American Society for Engineering Education as a top producer of undergraduate engineering degrees and by U.S. News and World Report as a top school for online graduate programs.

“It was evident from his campus visit that Dr. Ferguson shares the same passion for student success that we hold dear as a University, and there is no doubt he will be integral in helping us achieve our goal of becoming the nation’s premier R2 institution,” Whitten said. “He is a proven leader with a strong track record of academic accomplishments, and we are excited to have him join Owl Nation.”

A prolific researcher, Ferguson has collaborated with individuals and organizations across three continents, which has resulted in more than 500 peer-reviewed journal articles and conference proceedings, as well as numerous patents. In his academic career, he has collected more than $28 million in research and education funding and has actively included underrepresented undergraduate students in his research programs. He cofounded the North Carolina-based Project for innovation, Energy and Sustainability (PiES), which focused on incubating energy efficient and renewable technologies.

“I am excited to welcome Dr. Ferguson to Kennesaw State and to our College of Engineering,” Schwaig said. “Dr. Ferguson brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to SPCEET. He has a deep appreciation for our programs and faculty, and understands how both can play a transformative role in the lives and education of our students.”

Ferguson received his doctorate in compound semiconductors and his master’s degree in optoelectronics from the University of St. Andrews and his bachelor’s degree in physics from Heriot Watt University. He holds fellowships with the Royal Society of Arts, Manufactures and Commerce, the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineering, the Institute of Physics and the International Society for Optical Engineering.

“I am delighted to join Kennesaw State at a time of rapid growth and innovation,” he said. “The Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology is rich with history and is well-respected across the region. I very much look forward to joining the talented faculty and diverse student body as we solidify our role as Georgia’s engineering college.”

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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 45,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit