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Mohamed Lachemi named provost

Mohamed Lachemi

Mohamed Lachemi, dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Science, is named Ryerson’s new provost.

President Sheldon Levy has announced Mohamed Lachemi will be the next Provost and Vice-President, Academic of Ryerson University effective May 1, 2013. The provost serves as Ryerson’s chief academic officer and is responsible for strategic direction and leadership of all aspects of academic policy and planning, and leads the university’s budget process.

An award-winning teacher, prolific researcher and experienced administrator, Lachemi is dean of the university’s Faculty of Engineering and Architectural Science (FEAS). He joined Ryerson in 1998 as an assistant professor in Civil Engineering, served as acting chair of the department and has held the positions of graduate program director, associate chair and associate dean. He was appointed interim dean in 2009 and dean in 2010.

”In addition to his outstanding record as a scholar and researcher, Dr. Lachemi brings a profound understanding of the university’s special mission, the breadth of its academic disciplines and its focus on providing an excellent experience for students,” Levy said.

Lachemi is an internationally respected expert in the area of civil infrastructure and concrete structures. Among his many honours and distinctions, Lachemi was named a Canada Research Chair in Sustainable Construction in 2002. He is a Fellow of the Canadian Society for Civil Engineering, and received Ryerson’s FEAS Teaching Excellence Award in 2007 and Research Excellence Award in 2005.

“I am truly honoured to serve Ryerson University as provost and vice-president, academic,” said Lachemi. “It is an incredible opportunity to be part of President Levy’s vision for a modern university. I look forward to working with all members of the Ryerson community to continue to build a 21st-century university based on talent, excellence, diversity, collaboration and an entrepreneurial spirit.”

As dean, Lachemi has led a host of initiatives in the Faculty including the creation of the Quality Assurance Office to manage the quality of programs; the development of numerous new programs in science in anticipation of the stand-alone Faculty of Science; the creation of the Enrichment and Outreach Office to enhance the delivery of engineering and science outreach activities on- and off-campus; the development of the Centre for Urban Energy; and the founding of the Research and Innovation Office to support and encourage research in FEAS.

In 2010 under Lachemi’s leadership the Architecture program received accreditation status for the first time from the Canadian Architectural Certification Board; in 2012 the Biomedical Engineering program became the first and only accredited stand-alone undergraduate program of its kind in English Canada. Accreditation provides graduates a vital prerequisite for licensing as professionals.

“Students are the university’s key stakeholders and have a vital interest in the academic leadership of Ryerson, and I am thrilled to be part of the search committee that recommended Dr. Lachemi,” said Rodney Diverlus, president of the Ryerson Students’ Union. “In his 15 years at the University, Dr. Lachemi has demonstrated a passion for the needs of students and a deep commitment to enhancing the student experience on campus.”

Lachemi received his undergraduate degree in engineering with distinction from the University of Science and Technology of Oran, Algeria. He earned his MASc and PhD in Structural Engineering from Sherbrooke University in Quebec.

President Levy thanked the search committee for their work over the past many months and all those in the Ryerson community who provided feedback to the committee on the qualities needed in an effective leader.  The president particularly expressed his gratitude to John Isbister, who has served as interim provost since July 2012.

“I want to extend my deepest thanks to Dr. Isbister for stepping into the role of interim provost and providing outstanding service to the university,” he said.

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