Brighton Man Chosen to Lead RIT Engineering Technology Programs

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Sutherland guides 2,600-student body department

Note: Digital photograph available

George Sutherland of Brighton has been named chair of the manufacturing and mechanical engineering technology/packaging science department in the College of Applied Science and Technology, the college of innovation, at Rochester Institute of Technology.

Sutherland is past president of Washington Manufacturing Services in Mukilteo, Wash., which provides technical assistance and educational services to manufacturers in Washington state. Prior to that, he was vice president of CAMP Inc. in Cleveland, a provider of engineering, business and training services to manufacturers, and he was director of NIST Great Lakes Manufacturing Technology Center in Cleveland, a technology-transfer cooperative between the National Institute of Standards and Technology and CAMP Inc.

He was a professor of mechanical engineering and director of the advanced design methods lab at The Ohio State University in Columbus, where he taught from 1973 to 1979 and earned a meritorious achievement award in 1975. He was recognized by the American Society of Engineering Education with the Dow Outstanding Young Faculty Award in 1979.

“I’m excited at the opportunity to lead the department,” Sutherland says. “RIT aims to be ranked first nationally in engineering technology and packaging science.”

A native of Edmonton, Alberta, Canada, Sutherland, 55, earned a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Stanford University in 1973, a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, in 1970, and a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Alberta in Edmonton in 1969. His areas of expertise include machine design, machinery dynamics and automated manufacturing. He holds three patents.

“George brings a wealth of academic and professional experience, as well as a fresh perspective, to meet the challenges and seize the opportunities of this large, diverse and innovative department,” says Wiley McKinzie, dean of RIT’s College of Applied Science and Technology. “He will provide the leadership to develop the department to its full potential, which is huge.”

Sutherland oversees a department of 2,650 students and 55 faculty and staff. The department includes one of only seven packaging science programs in the U.S. He succeeds John Stratton, department chair since 1999, who remains at RIT as a professor of electrical and mechanical engineering technology. A member of the RIT faculty since 1971, Stratton was an associate dean from 1989 to 1999 and chair of electrical engineering technology from 1981 to 1989.

Note: Founded in 1829 and located in western New York state, RIT is internationally recognized as a leader in computing, engineering, imaging, technology, fine and applied arts, and education for the deaf. RIT enrolls 15,500 students in more than 240 undergraduate and graduate programs.

For the past decade, U.S. News & World Report has ranked RIT as one of the nation’s leading comprehensive universities. RIT is also included in Yahoo! Internet Life’s Top 100 Wired Universities, Fisk’s Guide to America’s Best Colleges and Barron’s Best Buys in Education.

RIT’s College of Applied Science and Technology, the college of innovation, offers 71 undergraduate and graduate degree programs and 39 certificates and diplomas emphasizing the application of technology. The college leads the university in adult education, corporate education, online learning, outreach education and international studies, including programs taught at the American College of Management and Technology in Dubrovnik, Croatia. The college is home to the world’s only university-level course in space tourism development, and its packaging science program is one on only seven in the nation.