Michele J. Grimm Named Dean of College of Engineering and Applied Sciences

A woman stands at a podium with a red backdrop behind her wearing a blue and black jacket.
Michele J. Grimm has been named dean of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. She will begin her tenure on August 25, 2022. (Photo by Scott Freedman)

ALBANY, N.Y. (July 21, 2022) — Michele J. Grimm, a bioengineer at Michigan State University, has been named the new dean of the University at Albany’s College of Engineering and Applied Sciences (CEAS) after a national search.

Grimm, currently the Wielenga Creative Engineering Endowed Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Biomedical Engineering at Michigan State University, will start in her new post at the growing college on Aug. 25.

Grimm’s arrival coincides with the launch of Albany AI, a $200 million public-private artificial intelligence supercomputing initiative that includes the renovation and transformation of the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences building as well as the construction of a new supercomputer. Albany AI represents a new era for teaching and research at UAlbany that will marry CEAS’s technical excellence with application-specific AI expertise across UAlbany’s academic and research programs, including climate and health sciences, cybersecurity and emergency preparedness.

“An important approach to addressing society’s greatest challenges is to bring a broad range of disciplines together in convergent problem solving,” said Grimm. “Albany AI is an exciting example of this — providing an opportunity for faculty and students from the college to work with researchers across the University, as well as companies and agencies in the Capital Region and throughout the state — to advance and apply artificial intelligence to answer pressing questions.”

Among her many leadership roles over her almost 30-year academic career, Grimm served as associate dean of academic affairs at Wayne State University, one of three R1 universities in Michigan, and as program director at the National Science Foundation in the chemical, bioengineering, environmental and transport (CBET) and civil, mechanical and manufacturing innovation (CMMI) divisions of the engineering directorate.

In August of 2019, she completed a three-year rotation as program director for three biomedical engineering-related programs at the National Science Foundation and also served as co-chair of the White House’s Office of Science and Technology Policy Task Force on Research and Development for Technology to Support Aging Adults.

At Michigan State, Grimm has worked to increase the success of students in engineering through the practice of creative pedagogy. Grimm’s research has also focused on injury biomechanics, ranging from characterizing important tissue properties to developing appropriate models for the assessment of injury mechanisms. Her research has included work with obstetricians to identify the pathomechanics of neonatal brachial plexus injury. As a result of her work, Grimm served on the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Task Force on Neonatal Brachial Plexus Palsy.

Grimm completed her bachelor’s degree in Biomedical Engineering and Engineering Mechanics at The Johns Hopkins University in 1990 and her PhD in Bioengineering at the University of Pennsylvania in 1994. She is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, the Biomedical Engineering Society, and the American Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering.

Background on the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences

Founded in 2015 as the first traditional public engineering option in the Capital Region, CEAS offers undergraduate and graduate degrees in electrical and computer engineering, environmental and sustainable engineering and computer science, with additional degrees in development. CEAS currently enrolls about 800 students, including majors, minors and graduate programs, and its faculty currently have more than $15 million in active research grants.