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Release: Immediate

UI appoints P. Barry Butler interim dean of College of Engineering

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The University of Iowa has named mechanical engineering professor P. Barry Butler to serve as interim dean of the College of Engineering, effective Feb. 1. Butler, who came to the College in 1984, has served as associate dean for academic programs since September 1997.

A nationwide search to select a permanent dean for the College of Engineering will begin immediately.

Butler succeeds Richard K. Miller, who resigned, effective Jan. 31, to become president of Franklin W. Olin College, a new engineering college to be located in Needham, Mass.

UI Provost Jon Whitmore said that Butler's research, teaching and administrative experience make him an excellent choice to lead the college.

"Butler has been serving in a major administrative position within the College of Engineering. He has been directly involved with recruiting and appointing faculty, handling student affairs issues and working on curriculum changes. I consulted widely with faculty and administrative leaders in the college and found very strong support for this appointment," Whitmore said.

Butler is a nationally recognized expert in thermal science and energetic materials and has published extensively in the field. He earned his bachelor's and master's degrees in aeronautical and astronautical engineering in 1979 and 1981, respectively, as well as a doctorate in mechanical engineering in 1984, all from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

One of 10 colleges on the University of Iowa campus, the College of Engineering has educational courses that date back more than a century. Its six departments include: biomedical, chemical and biochemical, civil and environmental, electrical and computer, industrial, and mechanical engineering. The college, ranked among the top 50 engineering schools nationally, is recognized for its small size, personalized approach to education and focused mission. Its location on a strong liberal arts campus -- with natural strengths in writing and communications, health sciences, business, law, and arts and humanities -- provides highly complementary resources to build the type of broad technological education demanded in a rapidly changing world.