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Michele V. Manuel is the first woman U. S. Steel Dean of the Swanson School of Engineering

Michele V. Manuel

The University of Pittsburgh has a new U. S. Steel Dean of the Swanson School of Engineering, effective Sept. 1: Michele V. Manuel, a leading materials engineer, innovator and leader who will be the first woman to hold the position.

“Michele is a transformational and award-winning scholar and educator,” Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor Joseph McCarthy wrote in the announcement. “Michele’s outstanding higher education and industry experience uniquely position her to lead the Swanson School forward.”

Manuel has served as chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Nuclear Engineering program at the University of Florida since 2017 and is the Rolf E. Hummel Professor of Electronic Materials. During her tenure as chair, she established new positions and programs, leading the recruitment of 20 faculty members and turning the department into one of the largest and most diverse of its kind in the U.S.

Manuel’s research extends beyond academia, including maintaining multiple industry partnerships and leading a medical device company, Element12 Biotechnologies LLC. She’s a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of ASM International (formerly the American Society for Metals) and received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers and a National Science Foundation CAREER Award.

She has been awarded the ASM Bradley Stoughton Award for Young Teachers, the American Vacuum Society Recognition for Excellence in Leadership and the Howard Hughes Medical Institute Distinguished Mentor Award, among other honors.

Manuel earned her PhD in materials science and engineering from Northwestern University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Florida.

Interim Dean Sanjeev Shroff will step down after two years of leading the Swanson School, where he advanced collaborative, interdisciplinary research and educational programs.

“Sanjeev has done an outstanding job, leading the school through a successful ABET accreditation process, significantly increasing the production of doctoral degrees, and a nearly 50% jump in research expenditures to a school record high of over $64 million,” McCarthy said in the announcement.

Shroff will serve as special assistant to the provost and senior vice chancellor for health sciences for interdisciplinary and translational research, training and education.


— Patrick Monahan