Sedki Riad, of Blacksburg, a professor of electrical and computer engineering, is the new director of international programs in the College of Engineering.

"The hope and intent in establishing this position is to bring unity and organization to our efforts in the international arena in keeping with strategic goals of the university," said the College of Engineering's Dean Hassan Aref in announcing the new director.

With this new administrative appointment, Riad will be providing leadership in establishing the vision and mission of international programs for the College. He received his bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering from the Cairo University of Egypt in 1966and 1972, respectively. Riad earned his Ph.D. at the University of Toledo in 1976. He also is the director of the Time Domain and RF Measurement Laboratory.

"The creation of this position shows the high level of importance the college places on international programs," Aref said. As the new director, Riad has been given a broad range of responsibilities in an effort to maximize the benefits of existing international programs within the college and creating new international opportunities.

Riad will begin his assignment by taking inventory of the wide variety of international programs offered to undergraduate and graduate engineering students and then coordinating the marketing of all of these programs for maximum effectiveness.

It is anticipated that the creation of this position will foster increased collaborative efforts with international institutions to enhance research and educational opportunities in engineering. Riad will be working closely with engineering faculty and deans to strengthen the international curriculum and related extra-curricular educational experiences for students. One of the new offerings coordinated by Riad will be an informational seminar for students on international educational opportunities, which will include student presentations about international experiences.

The new director will play an important role in originating proposals for funded research and development projects. This will be accomplished by identifying and initiating relationships with regional, national, and international agencies, universities, foundations, and research institutes which support international education research.

The College of Engineering at Virginia Tech is internationally recognized for its excellence in 14 engineering disciplines and computer science. The college's 5,600 undergraduates benefit from an innovative curriculum that provides a "hands-on, minds-on" approach to engineering education, complementing classroom instruction with two unique design-and-build facilities and a strong Cooperative Education Program. With more than 50 research centers and numerous laboratories, the college offers its 2,000 graduate students opportunities in advanced fields of study such as biomedical engineering, state-of-the-art microelectronics, and nanotechnology.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become among the largest universities in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech's eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 180 academic degree programs.