LTU adds to Business and IT Hall of Fame, dedicates computer lab, conference center
SOUTHFIELD—Lawrence Technological University inducted three highly successful individuals into its College of Business and Information Technology (CoBIT) Hall of Fame Monday, as well as dedicating two new facilities at the college—an advanced IT security computer lab, and a new conference room with advanced technological features.
Inducted into the Hall of Fame were a beloved economics professor who died in 2020, Thomas Marx; an LTU alumnus who became a successful entrepreneur, Mohammad Mokhberi; and LTU President Virinder Moudgil, who has announced his retirement.
Marx joined LTU in 2005 after 28 years at General Motors, where he held leadership positions in economics, public policy, and strategic planning. He earned a Bachelor of Science in business administration, summa cum laude, from Rider University, and a PhD in economics from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He was a longtime professor in Lawrence Tech’s Master of Business Administration program, teaching courses on economics, strategic management, and global leadership. He was also the founding director of a groundbreaking collaboration between LTU and the military, the Senior Service College Fellowship Program, that began in 2007. To date, 85 civilian leaders in the U.S. Army have earned a Master’s degree in Global Leadership and certificates in acquisition and program management under the program. His writing included a book on the role of business in society and more than 75 articles on economics, public policy, and leadership issues. He also presented at numerous academic and business conferences. Marx passed away in July 2020.
Mokhberi, a native of Iran, came to the United States in the 1970s to pursue a college education with his brother, Javad. Both attended Oakland Community College and then Lawrence Tech, Mohammad graduating with a degree in industrial engineering, his brother in mechanical engineering. Mokhberi then returned to Iran and a successful career, but eventually rejoined his brother, who had founded an electronic sensor company, in 1989. Together the two brothers built the company, FUTEK, into a 100-employee enterprise whose sensors are now on Mars as part of NASA rovers. Mokhberi died in 2013.
Moudgil joined LTU as its seventh president in 2012 after serving as provost and chief academic officer at Oakland University. During his leadership, LTU saw construction of a third and fourth student residence hall, LTU’s Detroit Center for Design and Technology, the Taubman Complex containing the Marburger STEM Center, and the Centrepolis Accelerator, a pioneering business incubator for manufacturing firms. Moudgil has led a surge in sponsored research at LTU and added new academic programs, including nursing, physician assistant, data analysis, artificial intelligence, game design, and more. At Oakland, he co-chaired the steering committee that developed the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine. His education includes the Harvard Institute for Educational Management, post-doctoral work in molecular medicine at the Mayo Clinic, and a PhD in biochemistry from Banaras Hindu University in India. He was a visiting scientist at universities in Yugoslavia and France, and a consultant with the United Nations. He serves on numerous community boards, and his scientific work has appeared in some 250 publications. Earlier this year, he announced his retirement from LTU, and a national search is nearing completion on his successor.
“These three men were true business visionaries whose accomplishments speak so well of the kind of business education that Lawrence Tech offers—theory put into practical application to expand the scope of human knowledge and improve society,” said Bahman Mirshab, CoBIT dean.
After the induction, Moudgil and Javad Mokhbery cut the ribbon on a FUTEK-funded cybersecurity computer lab. The advanced laboratory will be used to teach LTU information technology students how to apply cybersecurity techniques and tools to manage risks, along with learning digital forensics, network security, and incident response. Also through the resources of the lab, students will be able to prepare for the examination for the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) designation.
Monday’s event also included the presentation of the initial Thomas G. Marx Memorial Scholarship Award to LTU MBA student Megann Wallace.
Finally, the event included the dedication of a new conference room in the LTU Buell Building that houses the College of Business and IT. Supplying the funding for the advanced video and data streaming technology in the conference room were members of the CoBIT Board of Advisors and faculty: Eric Ayanegui, Wafa Bunney, Satish Jasti, Thomas Margosian, and Massood Omrani, as well as the Southfield-based accounting and business advisory firm Plante Moran and the Wixom-based IT firm Youngsoft Inc.
Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Business and Information Technology, and Engineering. PayScale lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 11 percent of universities for alumni salaries. Forbes and The Wall Street Journal rank LTU among the nation's top 10 percent. U.S. News and World Report lists it in the top tier of best in the Midwest. Students benefit from small class sizes and a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 107-acre campus include more than 100 student organizations and NAIA varsity sports.
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