UTEP Appoints Ahmad Itani as New Vice President for Research
Itani brings robust record of mentorship and service to research to new position
EL PASO, Texas (Jan. 24, 2023) – After a national search, The University of Texas at El Paso has appointed Ahmad M. Itani, Ph.D., as Vice President for Research starting May 1, 2023. As the leader of the Office of Research and Sponsored Projects, Itani will work to advance collaborative research partnerships and enhance the strong culture of institutional support for scholarly and creative activities.
Itani comes to UTEP from the University of Nevada, Reno, where he currently serves as the associate vice president for research and foundation professor for civil and environmental engineering. During his tenure as associate vice president, he supported the development of large, multidisciplinary projects and fostered a culture of serving and protecting research while mentoring students and early-career faculty.
“Dr. Itani brings with him a wealth of experience in championing research at an R1 institution,” President Heather Wilson said. “His expertise will be an asset as we continue to build on a strong foundation of research, create opportunity for students and apply knowledge to improve people’s lives.”
Itani earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Beirut Arab University in Lebanon and his master’s and doctoral degrees in the same field from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. A civil and environmental engineer by training, he is an expert in the seismic activity of steel bridges and community resiliency after seismic events. He is a licensed professional engineer in Nevada and California. Before becoming a professor at the University of Nevada, Reno, he worked at the California Department of Transportation. In 2018, he won the Roebling Award from the American Society of Civil Engineers.
“I am truly looking forward to joining the UTEP community and working with students and faculty to advance discovery and create opportunity for students,” Itani said. “My deep thanks goes to President Wilson, Provost Wiebe and the search committee for placing their confidence in me to carry out their vision for this great university. Dr. Roberto Osegueda has built a vibrant research enterprise at UTEP, and it will be my honor to continue his legacy of bringing everyone along in the pursuit of knowledge through research.”
Itani will fill the role held for 17 years by Roberto Osegueda, Ph.D. During Osegueda’s tenure, UTEP’s research enterprise grew from $37 million to more than $109 million annually and the University achieved the Carnegie Classification’s coveted R1 status that recognizes the top 4% of universities in the country for research.
About The University of Texas at El Paso
The University of Texas at El Paso is America’s leading Hispanic-serving university. Located at the westernmost tip of Texas, where three states and two countries converge along the Rio Grande, 84% of our 24,000 students are Hispanic, and half are the first in their families to go to college. UTEP offers 169 bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degree programs at the only open-access, top-tier research university in America.
Last Updated on January 24, 2023 at 12:00 AM | Originally published January 24, 2023
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