News Release

Jacobs School Dean Frieder Seible to Retire from UC San Diego in April 2013

Frieder Seible

Following nearly three decades of extraordinary service to the campus, including two terms as Dean of the Jacobs School of Engineering, Frieder Seible has announced his decision to retire from UC San Diego in April 2013. He will join Monash University as Dean, Faculty of Engineering and Academic Vice-President of the University in April, but will maintain close ties with UC San Diego as an emeritus faculty member and collaborator. Dean Seible, a structural engineer, is a world-leader in bridge design and strategies to mitigate earthquake damage to buildings and bridges. He has also built many metaphorical bridges spanning disciplines within engineering, as well as bridges that connect engineers with people and institutions outside of the Jacobs School, structures that will continue to serve the university for many years to come. (Read the official campus announcement here.)

Dean Seible joined the UC San Diego faculty in 1983, and served as founding chair of the department of Structural Engineering from 1995 until 2001. He was appointed Dean of the Jacobs School in 2003. Dr. Seible is a member of the National Academy of Engineering, is an elected Foreign Fellow of the Chinese Academy of Engineering, and is the Walter J. Zable Professor of Engineering and the Eric and Johanna Reissner Chair in Applied Mechanics and Structural Engineering. Dr. Seible chairs the California Department of Transportation Seismic Advisory Board, and has served on or led national and international committees on bridge design and retrofit for earthquake safety. He serves as a structural engineering consultant on many of the world's long-span bridges and has published more than 600 papers and technical reports, primarily related to seismic design of bridges and buildings as well as blast resistant design of critical structures.

As Dean, Dr. Seible presided over extraordinary growth of the Jacobs School as well as the founding of the departments of Structural Engineering and NanoEngineering and the creation of the Institute of Engineering in Medicine, a research collaboration between the Jacobs School and UC San Diego Health Sciences. He was instrumental in the development of the Charles Lee Powell Laboratories and the Englekirk Structural Engineering Center in the Structural Engineering department. Dean Seible's visionary leadership was critical for realizing the new Structural and Materials Engineering building, which stands as a model for future interdisciplinary research facilities. The new building brings together structural engineers, nanoengineers, visual artists and medical device researchers to solve the most complex of challenges. Under Dr. Seible's leadership the Jacobs School has also established highly successful teaching, diversity and professional development programs for students including: the Team Internship Program, Global TIES, the Gordon Engineering Leadership Center, the IDEA Student Center and the Moxie Center.

Dean Seible is currently on a well-deserved sabbatical leave for the duration of the Fall quarter, during which time Juan C. Lasheras has been appointed as Acting Dean. Dr. Lasheras is the Stanford and Beverly Penner Professor of Applied Sciences at the Jacobs School, a distinguished professor in the departments of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and Bioengineering, and Director of the Center for Medical Device and Instrumentation at the Institute of Engineering in Medicine.

“Frieder's leadership and accomplishments have brought a lot of visibility to the Jacobs School of Engineering and also to the campus,” said UC San Diego Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla. “Under his guidance, the Jacobs School has grown immensely over the last decade -- in reputation, size and program offerings. The Jacobs School is stronger and more innovative because of Frieder.”

“I am extremely grateful for all that Frieder Seible has done for this campus during his tenure here, especially in his role as Dean of the Jacobs School of Engineering,” said Suresh Subramani, Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs. “Frieder’s vision, dedication and hard work are particularly exemplified in the establishment of the IDEA Student Center as an instrument to foster a culture of inclusion, excellence and respect within the School, and in the new Structural and Materials Engineering building – which now stands as a model for future interdisciplinary research facilities. The new building brings together structural engineers, nanoengineers, visual artists and medical device researchers.”

A national search will be conducted for his successor.  

Media Contacts

Daniel Kane
Jacobs School of Engineering