College of Science Dean Sophia Maggelakis to become provost of Wentworth Institute of Technology
National search to begin for next COS dean
Dean Sophia Maggelakis will be leaving Rochester Institute of Technology to become the senior vice president for academic affairs and provost at Wentworth Institute of Technology.
Maggelakis joined RIT as an assistant professor in 1990, became head of the School of Mathematical Sciences in 2001, and became dean of the College of Science in 2010. She will start her new position effective Aug. 15 and will have dean emeritus status at RIT.
“This is an emotional move for me because RIT has been my home for so long,” said Maggelakis. “I consider the people at RIT, and especially the faculty, staff, and students from the College of Science, to be my second family. I am excited to make a positive impact in higher education through my new role, but RIT will always hold a special place in my heart.”
As a leader, Maggelakis has a track record of spearheading a number of initiatives in the College of Science and supporting and working collaboratively with faculty and staff. She is the founder of the School of Mathematical Sciences, the Summer Mathematics Institute, the Women in Science (WISe), the Center for Advancing STEM Teaching, Learning, and Evaluation (CASTLE), and the Integrated Sciences Academy. Maggelakis is an advocate for diversity and received the 2016 Edwina Award for Excellent Work in Enhancing Gender Inclusiveness and Diversity.
In addition to her administrative and leadership experience, Maggelakis rose through the faculty ranks at RIT as an educator who focused on student success and scholarship. She is a recipient of several awards, including the Eisenhart Award for Outstanding Teaching and a member of the Faculty for the 21st Century for the Project Kaleidoscope (PKAL), one of the leading organizations in the United States for building and sustaining strong programs in the STEM disciplines. Maggelakis’ research area is mathematical biology, where she has published book chapters, refereed journal articles, and presented numerous papers at national and international conferences.
During her tenure, the College of Science achieved several milestones, including:
- The addition of two new Ph.D. programs—she was the architect of the Ph.D. program in mathematical modeling and oversaw the development of the Ph.D. in physics.
- The development of a new MS program in physics, a new BS program in neuroscience (a joint program with the College of Liberal Arts), and a new MS program in data science (a joint program with Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences).
- Developing and implementing the College of Science strategic plan and major lab renovations.
- Establishing the College of Science as RIT’s leading college in the area of undergraduate research.
- Establishing a new structure: the college is comprised of six academic units (School of Mathematical Sciences, Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences, School of Physics and Astronomy, School of Chemistry and Materials Science, Chester F. Carlson Center for Imaging Science, and Integrated Sciences Academy) and seven research centers. The college received $5 million to name the Thomas H. Gosnell School of Life Sciences.
“Under Sophia’s leadership, the College of Science has seen remarkable success in scholarship, sponsored research, growing the reputation of its programs, and improving the quality of curriculum,” said Ellen Granberg, RIT provost and senior vice president for academic affairs. “I am grateful for Sophia’s efforts in educating the next generation of scientists as well as for her contributions to RIT throughout her career. I wish her continued success as she embarks on this next chapter of her career.”
Granberg said an interim dean will be appointed soon to oversee the college. A national search for the new dean is planned for the 2022-2023 academic year.