By GREGORY ZELLER //
New York Institute of Technology President Hank Foley announced Thursday that Anid, dean of NYIT’s School of Engineering and Computing Sciences since 2009, has been promoted to vice president and will head up NYIT’s new Office of Strategic Communications and External Affairs.
The promotion is effective immediately, with Anid continuing to split her time between NYIT’s Old Westbury and New York City campuses and longtime engineering school Professor Babek Beheshti taking over as interim dean.
Calling her “a results-oriented leader with astute business acumen,” NYIT said in a statement that Anid – the first female dean in the engineering school’s history – will now work to “articulate NYIT’s mission as a premier polytechnic.”
It’s the perfect role for Anid, according to Foley, who noted the longtime advocate of women in STEM fields (for science, technology, engineering and mathematics) “worked tirelessly” as dean “to demonstrate to prospective students and their families what makes NYIT’s engineering and computer-science programs so exciting.”
“She has been especially effective in her efforts to bring more young women into technical disciplines and has been unflagging in her advancement and promotion of the engineering school, its people and its programs,” Foley said Thursday. “It is this energy and passion that she will now bring to all of NYIT in her new role.”
Anid said she was “excited to serve as an ambassador for NYIT and help realize President Foley’s bold vision,” which is to establish the institute’s prominence regionally and elsewhere.
The former dean added that’s she’s grateful for a chance “to help invigorate the institution’s communications team, which represents the collective voice of the NYIT community.”
The longtime educator, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemical engineering from Sweden’s KTH Royal Institute of Technology and a PhD in environmental engineering from the University of Michigan, logged a number of innovative accomplishments at the College of Engineering and Computing Sciences.
She spearheaded the creation of NYIT’s National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education, the school’s federally and state-funded Entrepreneurship and Technology Innovation Center and its innovative business incubator program, which is certified by the Empire State Development Corp.’s Division of Science, Technology and Innovation.
Anid also orchestrated an overhaul of the engineering school’s academic programs and research facilities – including direct involvement in the recruitment of top cybersecurity, bioengineering and clean-energy faculty – and led NYIT into progressive alliances with commercial and legislative leaders, while creating new undergraduate honors programs.
She’s also credited with leading the U.S. State Department-sponsored U.S.-China EcoPartnership – a strategic attempt by international companies, universities and municipalities to effect new environmental protections – as well as other global expansion efforts.
A writer and editor on numerous projects – including her latest work, “The Internet of Women: Accelerating Culture Change” – Anid has been copiously honored for her work, particularly her efforts encouraging young women to pursue STEM-related educations.
In short, the chairwoman of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers’ Public Affairs and Information Committee, former graduate-program director of Manhattan College’s Chemical Engineering Department and active member of more than a dozen additional boards, organizations and scientific journals will be a tough act to follow at the College of Engineering and Computing Sciences.
That difficult task now falls to interim Dean Beheshti, who previously served as the College of Engineering and Computing Sciences’ associate dean.
There was no immediate word from NYIT on a permanent Anid successor, but Beheshti is certainly up the task, according to Anid, who pronounced the national Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ regional director a worthy successor.
“The School of Engineering and Computing Sciences, its students and faculty are in very capable hands with Dr. Beheshti,” Anid told Innovate LI.
As for her new job, the former dean and freshly minted VP said she looks forward to shaping the Office of Strategic Communications and External Affairs into “an integral part of the innovation economy on Long Island and the Greater New York region.”
“President Foley is creating an exciting direction for NYIT that embraces our history and looks into our future as a vibrant university on the leading edge of knowledge and job creation,” Anid noted. “Our focus is getting the word out about the inspiring accomplishments of our community – telling the story of who we are, what we do and how we prepare our students for a meaningful and rewarding future.”