NatSci's Sekhar Chivukula recommended as associate provost and dean of undergraduate studies

  • May 18, 2016
  • Alumni, Faculty & Staff

Sekhar Chivukula

Sekhar Chivukula

Sekhar Chivukula will be recommended as Michigan State University's associate provost for undergraduate education and dean of undergraduate studies. If approved by the MSU Board of Trustees, Chivukula’s appointment will be effective Aug. 16.

Chivukula currently serves as associate dean for faculty development for the College of Natural Science (NatSci) and as a professor of physics in the Department of Physics and Astronomy. He is a co-organizer of the workshop series on teaching essentials for MSU faculty and a co-founder of the MSU STEM Educational Alliance.

“Sekhar has transformed faculty development for the College of Natural Science and has led, or been a major player in, all of NatSci’s recent programs advancing STEM education,” said Dave DeWitt, NatSci senior associate dean. “He will be missed by the college, but will have an even bigger impact in his new role as MSU associate provost for undergraduate education.”

Chivukula also serves as project director for the MSU Howard Hughes Medical Institute STEM education project – LEVERS: Leveraging Engagement and Vision to Encourage Retention in STEM – and as a principal investigator for the Dow STEM Scholars Program.

“Dr. Chivukula has demonstrated leadership in his work here at MSU related to undergraduate STEM education and his faculty development work has been linked to enhancing the quality of teaching undergraduates,” said MSU Provost June Pierce Youatt.

Prior to joining MSU in 2003, Chivukula served Boston University in a variety of roles starting in 1987, including professor of physics, director of graduate studies for the Department of Physics and associate chair for HEP research for the department.

“I am proud of the quality of MSU’s undergraduate programs and am honored to have the opportunity to work with faculty, students and staff from across campus in continuing to improve the educational achievement of students from all backgrounds,” Chivukula said.

Chivukula earned his bachelor’s degree in physics and applied mathematics in 1983 from the California Institute of Technology and his master’s and doctoral degrees from Harvard University in physics, in 1984 and 1987, respectively.

His research has focused on the theory of electroweak symmetry breaking and on the phenomenological implications of theories beyond the standard model of particle physics. His teaching experience includes teaching at both the graduate and undergraduate level, where he has been committed to incorporating active learning in all his classes. Chivukula also enjoys making interactive presentations on particle physics and cosmology to the general public and to K-12 students and teachers.

Chivukula succeeds Douglas Estry, who has agreed to work with the Office of the Provost on a part-time basis as a senior adviser to the provost to direct special projects and to continue his work with the STARR Charitable Foundation Scholarship Program. 

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