Penn State Harrisburg

Bachnak named director, School of Science, Engineering, and Technology

Penn State Harrisburg has announced the appointment of Dr. Rafic “Ray” Bachnak as director of the college’s School of Science, Engineering, and Technology.

Dr. Bachnak currently is professor of electrical and computer engineering and chair of the Department of Engineering, Mathematics, and Physics at Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) in Laredo, Texas.  Prior to joining TAMIU in 2007, he had held academic positions at Texas A&M - Corpus Christi, Northwestern State University (Natchitoches, La.), and Franklin University (Columbus, Ohio).

“Dr. Bachnak brings to Penn State Harrisburg a rich academic and administrative background, with proven leadership experience in many areas, including, but not limited to, the advancement of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) initiatives,” said Penn State Harrisburg Chancellor Mukund Kulkarni. “We look forward to welcoming him to the college community.”

Throughout his career, Bachnak has served as a principal or co-principal investigator on more than $14 million in research, outreach, and infrastructure grants. He received a Fulbright Scholar grant in 2009-10 to lecture and conduct research at Notre Dame University, Lebanon, and also has held several fellowships with NASA and the U.S. Navy Laboratories.

Bachnak earned his doctorate, as well as master’s and bachelor’s degrees in electrical engineering from Ohio University. He is a registered professional engineer in Texas and a senior member of the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the Instrumentation, Systems, and Automation Society (ISA).

“It is truly an honor to be selected as the next school director.  I am excited by the challenges and opportunities that this position offers and look forward to working with each of the programs in the school to maintain high quality education while fostering research and growing resources,” said Dr. Bachnak.

“A proven educator and scientific researcher for more than 20 years, Dr. Bachnak possesses a level of experience that makes him an ideal candidate to lead the School of Science, Engineering, and Technology and to contribute broadly to the college as a whole,” said Dr. Omid Ansary, senior associate dean for academic affairs.

The School of Science, Engineering, and Technology is the home to bachelor’s programs in civil engineering, computer science, electrical engineering, electrical engineering  technology, mathematical science, mechanical engineering, mechanical engineering technology, science, and structural design and construction engineering technology and master’s programs in computer science, engineering management, engineering science, environmental engineering, electrical engineering, and environmental pollution control.

Dr. Bachnak becomes the school director effective, August 1, 2013.