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Wednesday, Jul 30, 2014
Education

New USF engineering dean brings experience at NASA

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— The University of South Florida has chosen a Marquette University dean who has had a significant role in the U.S. space program as head of its College of Engineering.

Robert Bishop, currently dean of the engineering school at the Catholic university in Milwaukee, takes on the same role at USF on Aug. 8. He has been recognized as a distinguished teaching professor and researcher in aerospace engineering, and is a specialist in the application of systems and control theory to modern engineering products. He works with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration on advanced navigation algorithms for test flight vehicles.

“The innovative research and creative work of this college is crucial to the future of USF,” said university President Judy Genshaft in a statement announcing the hire. “Under Dr. Bishop’s leadership and through the hard work of our talented students and faculty, we know the future is very bright.”

Engineering is the third-largest college at USF, behind only Arts and Sciences and Business. It has 4,600 students, 150 faculty members and conducts more than $25 million in annual research.

As dean, Bishop will develop strategic goals and advocate for the college on a state, national and global level.

“The University of South Florida is an exciting and dynamic place,” Bishop said in the statement. “I can’t wait to see what we accomplish together.”

He replaces Rafael Perez, who has served as interim dean for the past year.

Bishop earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in aerospace engineering at Texas A&M University. He earned his Ph.D. at Rice University in electrical and computer engineering.

He worked for Draper Laboratory, where he became a specialist in guidance, navigation and control of aerospace vehicles, and was a professor at the University of Texas-Austin.

His current research, which will continue at USF, involves advanced navigation algorithm development. He initiated several miniaturized satellite projects focusing on autonomous rendezvous and quick access to space, and launched his first miniature satellite aboard the space shuttle in July 2009.

jstockfisch@tampatrib.com

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