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Media Contact: Troy Anderson, (858) 822-3075 or tanders@soe.ucsd.edu

JACOBS SCHOOL OF ENGINEERING ASSOCIATE DEAN RECEIVES NATIONAL ENGINEERING WEEK OUTSTANDING EDUCATOR AWARD

Anthony Sebald, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at UC San Diego’s Jacobs School of Engineering has been awarded the “Outstanding Educator of the Year” award for his continuing contribution to the field of engineering education. The nomination came from the faculty with whom he works at the request of the students. The San Diego Committee for National Engineers Week presented the award at a banquet on February 25. National Engineers Week began February 20.

Sebald oversees issues related to engineering education and admission at the Jacobs School. Because of his efforts, the School has initiated some revolutionary changes in the curriculum, such as engineering design classes for freshman students. He has used his expertise in robotics to develop a class in which freshmen build robots, and at the end of the course, have the chance to race their robots against each other. The introduction of this practical experience so early in the electrical engineering curriculum not only allows the students to gain a better understanding of the major early on in their education, but it results in the acquisition of real skills that can be used immediately in industry settings.

Sebald is also very involved in assessing the quality of the educational experience for all engineering students, and actively leads the discussions about ways in which the school can better support the academic, personal and professional development of the engineering students. In addition to teaching the freshman design course, he also teaches an upper division course in Neural Networks and Fuzzy Logic.

Students at the Jacobs School have a genuine respect and affection for Professor Sebald. They will tell you that he is tough but fair. According to Glynda Davis, nominator and Director of Engineering Student Services, “I've read student evaluations of him and his courses, and I'm pleased to see that the students recognize the difference he tries to make in their educational experience. His office hours for students are sacred, and many times his staff and their needs will wait until he is finished with all comers. He takes real joy in seeing students succeed.”

Prior to joining UC San Diego in 1976, Sebald gained extensive industrial experience with General Electric and IBM. His research interests include design and performance evaluation of intelligent systems; the use of evolutionary programming in the design of fuzzy and neural systems capable of interacting with humans; and applications to energy, communications, multimedia, and control problems.

Ranked among the nation's top ten engineering schools according to the most recent National Academy of Sciences survey, the Irwin and Joan Jacobs School of Engineering at the University of California, San Diego is an excellent institution in the midst of vibrant growth. Its mission is to educate young men and women to be industry and academic leaders, and to create new innovations that fuel economic prosperity and improve quality of life. The Jacobs School of Engineering awards B.S., M.Eng., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees through five academic departments, providing the largest and most comprehensive engineering education program in San Diego. UC San Diego consistently ranks among the top 10 universities in the nation for research productivity. To learn more about the Jacobs School of Engineering, visit its web site at http://www.soe.ucsd.edu/.


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