Tarek M. Sobh, PhD
Tarek M. Sobh was named vice president of academic affairs and provost at Lawrence Technological University, effective September 1, 2020. Sobh’s appointment concluded a national search, said LTU President and CEO Virinder K. Moudgil, who made the announcement.
“In Dr. Sobh, we feel we have found an internationally recognized educational leader who will help us continue to improve Lawrence Tech’s strong academic programs, expand our service to the professions and the region, and assure that our graduates are well prepared for the challenges of the shifting global economy,” Moudgil said. “Dr. Sobh is also an exemplary scientist and scholar and through his research, writings, and presentations, has added much to the field of engineering and other technological professions.”
Sobh formerly was the interim provost at the University of Bridgeport (UB) in Connecticut as well as UB’s executive vice president of research and economic development and founding dean of its College of Engineering, Business, and Education.
As LTU’s provost, Sobh (pronounced “soap”) oversees LTU’s four colleges, its library, and LTU’s offices of eLearning, Student Affairs, Enrollment Management, and Corporate and Community Partnerships.
“I am honored to be named the provost at LTU and very much look forward to working with the Lawrence Tech community,” Sobh said. “LTU is an exceptional institution that has positively impacted the lives of generations of students and improved the world through scholarship, discovery, and community service. Having spent 30-plus years in academia, I believe in the tremendous potential of LTU to be the premier educational institution in the region, which provides its students and faculty with opportunities to achieve significant academic objectives, resulting in top-notch education and scholarly accomplishments.”
Sobh added that, “I am confident that through faculty and administration initiatives, LTU will continue to advance its leadership role in the local and global communities, academia, and industry. I look forward to being a catalyst within this process as an agent of positive change who can help move forward many of these exciting endeavors and activities.”
Sobh succeeds Maria J. Vaz, who served on LTU’s faculty since 1984 and as provost since 2006. She retired on June 30 and has held a large number of leadership posts at LTU. Last year, Crain’s Detroit Business named her among its 2019 Notable Women in STEM.
Sobh is also distinguished professor of engineering and computer science at UB, a Fellow of the African Academy of Sciences, and member of the Connecticut Academy of Science and Engineering. A licensed professional engineer with many additional certifications, Sobh received the B.Sc. engineering degree with honors from Alexandria University in Egypt, and MS and PhD degrees in computer and information science from the University of Pennsylvania.
He is the founding director of UB’s Interdisciplinary Robotics, Intelligent Sensing, and Control (RISC) laboratory, founder of the High-Tech Business Incubator at UB, and founding director of the UB Innovation Center. He began his academic career as research assistant professor of computer science at the University of Utah. His background is in the fields of computer science and engineering, robotics, automation, control theory, STEM education, manufacturing, artificial intelligence, computer vision, and signal processing.
Sobh has published over 250 refereed journal and conference papers, and book chapters in these and other areas, in addition to 27 books. He has served or currently serves on the editorial boards of 18 journals, and has served as chair and on the program committees of over 300 international conferences and workshops in robotics, automation, sensing, computing, systems, control, online engineering, and engineering education. He has presented more than 150 keynote speeches, invited talks and lectures, colloquia, and seminars at research meetings, university departments, research centers, and companies. He has supervised over 50 award-winning graduate and undergraduate students working on different projects within robotics, prototyping, computer vision, control, and manufacturing, as well as more than 300 undergraduate and graduate students working on their bachelor’s projects, master’s thesis or PhD dissertations.
Sobh also consults and provides service to industrial organizations and companies, including companies in the United States, Switzerland, India, Malaysia, England, the United Arab Emirates, Kazakhstan, and Egypt. He has received over 60 research awards and grants and received the ASEE Northeastern U.S. Distinguished Engineering Professor of the Year award, the IEEE Northeast Technological Innovation Research Award, an ACE Higher Education Award and many other recognitions of his educational, research, scholarly, and service activities in engineering, education, computing, and diversity initiatives