Dear Alumni and Friends,
After having had the honor to serve Fenn College of Engineering as the dean for nearly five years and having reached my goals, I have decided to return to the faculty in order to pursue other professional development prospects. Over the period of my tenure, together with your help and a talented group of faculty, staff and students, we were able to surmount many challenges and initiate numerous new programs.
As a result, the College has seen a surge in enrollment that is unprecedented in its recent history, such as: 146% increase in new freshman enrollment since the inception of Fenn Academy in 2005; 119% increase in undergraduate enrollment; 92% increase in new transfer enrollment; 51% increase in new graduate enrollment. We also increased the number of underrepresented students significantly with 26% increase in African American students, 112% increase in Hispanic students, 15% increase in Asian or Pacific Islanders and 33% increase in Native Americans. Our enrollment also benefited from many national and international partnerships that we established.
Moreover, we have attracted very qualified students to Fenn as the GPA of entering freshman increased to 3.55 and the average ACT of our applicants raised to 23.5. We also increased our retention by initiating programs such as the Graduation Team, free tutorials, and restructured advising, as well as various activities to engage our students in the college life and beyond including the Fenn Ambassadors, Freshman Picnic and a restructured and accredited Co-op Program. The College also received a clean bill of health from the University which two years ago completed a comprehensive review of all of our programs.
Fiscally, we exercised prudence and even during a period of substantial budget cuts, we ended every year with a surplus. However, we remained cognizant of the fact that even during these fiscally challenging times, we have to continue to invest in our future and plant seeds for future growth of the College. Consequently, we just hired two new faculty members with outstanding credentials. The College also received substantial gifts, endowments and donations from our alumni and supporters and our five-year strategic plan is being successfully implemented. Also, during the last five years, we established many new academic programs such as a new M.S. in Biomedical Engineering, four accelerated B.S./M.S. programs, a four-year technology program and restructured our undergraduate curricula in many departments. As a result of all these, we have just received the draft of perhaps the best accreditation report in our existing records.
I thank you for your support and greatly appreciate all your efforts. I believe together, as one Fenn family, we have accomplished and surpassed our goals and objectives as we outlined them some five years ago.
At this stage of my professional career, having reached my objectives as the dean, I wish to pursue other challenging academic and professional interests. As the process of transition requires careful planning, I announced in early April of this year that I shall return to the faculty at the end of August. I remain most appreciative and indebted to all of you for your cooperation and support.
Dean Bahman Ghorashi