NMiTE, Britain’s new engineering university, has appointed Professor Janusz Kozinski as its inaugural President and Chief Executive.
Kozinski has wide experience as an international academic leader and entrepreneur. Most recently he orchestrated the creation of the Lassonde School of Engineering in Toronto, Canada.
“This is perhaps the brightest and the boldest academic start up in recent times in the UK or anywhere else,” said Kozinski. “The chance to lead this project was impossible to resist. All the ingredients are there to create an engineering education experience designed for the future, not the past or the present.”
Opening in 2020, the NMiTE project – to be officially named later this year – will be based in Hereford and will eventually be home to 5,000 students.
The NMiTE project has been described* as “at worst an intriguing experiment and at best an innovative template that traditional universities might learn from”, and is perhaps one of the most ambitious new ventures in British higher education. Kozinski added: “The first students applying to this university will have been born after the year 2000. They deserve an education designed for them, not for their parents and grandparents.
“We need our most creative, imaginative and ambitious young people, of all genders and backgrounds, to see engineering as a path to making real change in the world. “I can promise this will be different from anything we’ve seen before in higher education. So please watch this space.”
Kozinski will be assembling a team of leaders and teachers – from inside and outside academia – to turn this project from an idea to reality by 2020.
“We need people for the project, whoever they are and wherever they come from, with passion and drive. You might be a recent graduate or a veteran professor who wants the chance to rethink how we prepare young people for the future, or you might be someone who’s never studied engineering. I have a message to all those who are intrigued by this new project… Don’t wait to see what happens. We need your ideas and your energy right now. Please come join us!”
A Polish-born Canadian, Kozinski will take up his post in Hereford on 1 July 2017.
Kozinski has been Founding Dean of the Lassonde School of Engineering at York University in Toronto, Canada. This $250-million academic start up created a new concept of engineering education with a broad ‘Renaissance’ curriculum including humanities, law and business, a ‘flipped classroom’ model of teaching without lectures, and a commitment to become the first engineering school in Canada to achieve a 50:50 gender balance.
Previously he was a leader and scholar at McGill University in Montreal, University of Saskatchewan, and Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He has also held several visiting professorships including the Institute for Advanced Studies and the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique (France’s most distinguished research laboratory).
David Sheppard, co-project leader and member of the NMiTE Board, said,
“Anyone who meets Janusz realises immediately that they are meeting a leader and a visionary. He is a relentless motivator and collaborator who sets his sights on a bold vision, and builds an exceptional team to make that possible. He was our unanimous choice and we can’t wait to have him at the helm.”
* The Times, London 6 September 2016
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