Hoboken, NJ – Dr. Constantin Chassapis, the deputy dean of the School of Engineering and Science and the longtime director of the Department of Mechanical Engineering, has been named this year's recipient of the Stevens President's Leadership Award.
The award, which honors individuals for their extraordinary service to Stevens and their groundbreaking achievements in their field of study, will be presented by the Edwin A. Stevens Society at the Society's annual gala, held each year in early November. Dr. Chassapis has been tapped this year for both his significant research contributions and for his dynamic leadership of the mechanical engineering department.
Over the past decade, he has played an instrumental role in rebuilding, modernizing and growing the mechanical engineering department, which was the University’s first program and still its largest. Since 2001, he has helped to double the faculty and nearly triple the number of students earning undergraduate and graduate ME degrees, and created new areas of concentration, including aerospace engineering and pharmaceutical manufacturing, to connect Stevens students to vital industries.
"Dr. Chassapis's stewardship of the department has seen tremendous growth in both student enrollment and the recruitment and mentorship of many new high-caliber faculty who are making significant contributions to engineering education and research," said Dr. George Korfiatis, interim president of Stevens. "Originally founded as a school dedicated to mechanical engineering, Stevens continues this tradition of excellence in mechanical engineering, innovation and entrepreneurship. It is an honor and a privilege to work with Dr. Chassapis as we strive toward the future achievements that will shape the world of tomorrow."
Dr. Chassapis, who joined Stevens in 1988 as an assistant professor, said he was encouraged from the start by the collegiality he discovered on campus to make the University's challenges and opportunities his own.
"I have always looked at the department as my home and felt extremely proud of it," he said. "Over the years, we have made many strategic changes and additions, but we have stayed close to Stevens’ educational philosophy since its founding: to tackle important, practical problems, backed up by the best science and engineering. When you do this right, and get people collaborating, you promote innovation and entrepreneurship."
His research, in areas ranging from integrated product and process development, knowledge-based system design, and remote sensing and control, follows this model. He has created, for example, a prototype infrastructure for ubiquitous remote access and control of multi-sensor and multi-actuator environments with the potential for a broad range of practical applications, including a remotely accessible educational laboratory.
The EAS Society is named for Edwin A. Stevens, the Hoboken-born inventor, engineer and entrepreneur who bequeathed the land and start-up funds to establish Stevens Institute of Technology 140 years ago. The Society continues this tradition of philanthropy with donations to the University, having a powerful impact on every aspect of student life, from scholarships, to athletics, to academic programs.
"As we celebrate this milestone anniversary, we are reminded of how important it is to renew and strengthen our ties with the Stevens community. Some of the most loyal, dedicated and generous members of the Stevens family join us at the annual Gala, and so we also want to take the opportunity to extend the heartfelt thanks we feel on campus throughout the year," said Dr. Maureen Weatherall '78, vice president and chief administrative officer. "The impact of their philanthropy, their rich connections to the University, and their outreach to the community, cannot possibly be understated. It sustains us. Following their example, we look to deepen the University’s connections with the extended Stevens family – its alumni, faculty, the students and their parents."
Dr. Chassapis's latest initiative, the creation of a scholarship fund to support students in overseas academic programs and internships, is in keeping with the Society's tradition of stepping up to embrace new opportunities for Stevens students.
"In an increasingly competitive, globalized society, what we're up against is creating an engineer who can add tremendous value and function anywhere in the world. To do this, we need to emphasize this international experience. And if cost is the prohibitive factor, we need to do something about it," Dr. Chassapis said. "We'll begin by establishing a network of internships and academic programs. For our students, that will be the starting point. I expect them to come up with all kinds of innovative projects."
About Stevens Institute of Technology
Founded in 1870 and celebrating 140 Years of Innovation, Stevens Institute of Technology, The Innovation University™, lives at the intersection of industry, academics and research. The University's students, faculty and partners leverage their collective real-world experience and culture of innovation, research and entrepreneurship to confront global challenges in engineering, science, systems and technology management.
Based in Hoboken, N.J. and with a location in Washington, D.C., Stevens offers baccalaureate, master’s, certificates and doctoral degrees in engineering, the sciences and management, in addition to baccalaureate degrees in business and liberal arts. Stevens has been recognized by both the US Department of Defense and the Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Excellence in the areas of systems engineering and port security research. The University has a total enrollment of more than 2,200 undergraduate and 3,700 graduate students with almost 450 faculty. Stevens’ graduate programs have attracted international participation from China, India, Southeast Asia, Europe and Latin America as well as strategic partnerships with industry leaders, governments and other universities around the world. Additional information may be obtained at www.stevens.edu and www.stevens.edu/news.