School of Engineering names Ianelli as new director

Courtesy Photo / Joe Iannelli
Joe Iannelli has been chosen as the director of the School of Engineering

Courtesy Photo / Joe Iannelli Joe Iannelli has been chosen as the director of the School of Engineering

Chelsea Stoskopf

Equipped with an extensive background in engineering, newly appointed director Joe Iannelli is ready to take on his role working for the Grand Valley State University School of Engineering.

Iannelli will succeed Charlie Standridge, who served as the director of the school and as assistant dean of the Padnos College of Engineering and Computing. Standridge will continue as the assistant dean while Iannelli takes over as director on July 3.

“Dr. Iannelli brings tremendous experience in engineering education in the U.S. and abroad,” said Paul Plotkowski, dean of the Padnos College of Engineering and Computing. “These perspectives will be valuable in preparing our graduates for their careers. I look forward to Dr. Iannelli helping us further mature the existing programs and work with our industry partners to identify opportunities for growth.”

Iannelli comes to GVSU from Robert Morris University in Pittsburgh, Penn., where he has served as head of the engineering department for the past three years. He received a bachelor’s and master’s degrees in aeronautical engineering from the University of Palermo in Italy. He has taught aerospace, biomedical and mechanical engineering for 13 years at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville, where he also received a doctorate in engineering science and mechanics. Additionally, he served as director of the Center of Aeronautics at City University in London for three years.

“Engineering has always been my passion since I was a high school student,” he said. “What motivated me to become an engineer were airplanes, aviation and the space program. That’s how I started in engineering myself. (I’ve) never regretted it.”

As director, Iannelli said he plans to work on completing the development strategic plan for the School of Engineering and developing strong international opportunities for students because he firmly believes in their value.

“A director sets the tone for the entire school,” he said. “The director is responsible for the overall direction of the school, the continued evolutions and improvements of all the graduate and undergraduate programs.”

He said he also wants to be involved in the recruiting and teaching of students, which are important and dear to him.

“I will continue to teach,” Iannelli said. “I cannot imagine myself being a director without teaching. I want to get to know all of our engineering students, and I want them to get to know me. Quite simply, students are my joy.”

Iannelli said he will have an open-door policy and wants students to realize he is their advocate. Students deserve a successful and enjoyable learning experience, and that is the reason why universities exist, he said.

“Honestly, I did not know that this exciting university existed in Grand Rapids,” he said. “But I’m very happy that I found out about it and most importantly, I’m thrilled that I’m now a part of it. In the months to come, I’m going to learn so much more about the university, my new colleagues, my new students, my new city, and I just cannot wait.”

[email protected]