Distinguished Department Chair Seminar with Susan C. Hagness: Fostering Growth, Excellence, and Diversity in ECE at the UW-Madison


May 4, 2023    
10:00 am - 11:00 am


2222 Coover Hall
Coover Hall, Ames, IA 50011

Event Type

Title: Fostering Growth, Excellence, and Diversity in ECE at the UW-Madison

Abstract: I will highlight two recent innovations from my research group that leverage the interactions of electromagnetic waves with human and plant tissue for applications in smart medicine and smart agriculture, and then pivot to share my perspective as the chair of the ECE department at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where the size of our two B.S. degree programs has doubled over the past 10 years. Women now comprise 25% of our tenure-track/tenured faculty and 25% of our PhD student cohort. Our higher-than-average gender diversity is one of the tangible outcomes of our commitment to fostering a welcoming and inclusive international community of scholars. We currently have 18 assistant professors and are well known across the Big10+ for exceptional support and mentoring of junior faculty. Our faculty have received 9 NSF CAREER Awards since 2020.


Biography: Susan C. Hagness received the B.S. and Ph.D. degrees in electrical engineering from Northwestern University.  She is the Philip D. Reed Professor and Chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. She previously served as the College of Engineering Associate Dean for Research and has held a variety of advisory board appointments and leadership roles within the IEEE, the U.S. National Committee of the International Union of Radio Science, the ASEE Engineering Research Council, and ECEDHA. She has co-authored more than 100 journal papers, eight book chapters, and two editions (with Allen Taflove) of a widely adopted textbook on the finite-difference time-domain method in computational electromagnetics. Recognitions for her holistic approach to teaching and mentoring and for her research in computational and experimental applied electromagnetics include the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (2000), IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society Early Career Achievement Award (2004), URSI Issac Koga Gold Medal (2005), IEEE Trans. Biomedical Engineering Outstanding Paper Award (2007), IEEE Education Society Van Valkenburg Early Career Teaching Award (2007), Physics in Medicine and Biology Citations Prize (2011), UW-Madison Women Faculty Mentoring Program Slesinger Award for Excellence in Mentoring (2017), and College of Engineering awards for excellence in teaching (2014), research (2018), and equity and diversity efforts (2021).  She is a Fellow of the IEEE, AAAS, AIMBE, and NAI.


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