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Yates Named Dean of Ferris' College of Engineering Technology

J.K. YatesJ.K. Yates was named dean of Ferris State University’s College of Engineering Technology in an announcement made to the university community by Fritz Erickson, provost and vice president for Academic Affairs on Friday, April 20. The appointment of Yates is effective July 1.

“Dr. Yates’ passion for providing students with quality education and hands-on learning opportunities has remained prevalent throughout her impressive professional career,” Erickson said. “She takes pride in what her former students have accomplished, and we look forward to the leadership that she will provide for the College of Engineering Technology at Ferris.”

Yates was the Joe W. Kimmel Distinguished Professor in the Kimmel School of Construction Management, Engineering Technology, and Engineering at the Western Carolina University campus of the University of North Carolina and had previously served as department head. Prior to joining WCU, Yates was a professor and department chair for the Department of Construction Management and Engineering at North Dakota State University. Her other positions have included professor and focus area coordinator for the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Ohio University and professor and program coordinator for the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at San Jose State University, which held the highest enrollments of Construction Engineering graduate programs in the world for nine years. 

Yates has numerous professional publications, including her two most recent books from 2012, Engineering and Construction Productivity Improvement (American Society of Civil Engineers) and Sustainable Engineering Design and Construction (Prentice Hall/Pearson). She has received research awards totaling more than a million dollars from organizations such as the National Science Foundation, the Hewlett Packard Foundation and the Construction Industry Institute. She has served in numerous professional roles, including special editor for the American Society of Civil Engineers, associate editor of the Journal of the Project Management Institute, and proposal reviewer for the National Science Foundation. Yates earned a doctoral degree in Civil Engineering from Texas A&M University.

Erickson thanked those involved with the search as he looked ahead to the arrival of Yates on campus in July.

“I would like to thank the search committee, including co-chairs Brian Craig and Mike Ropele, for their efforts in this search,” Erickson said. “Additionally, I would like to thank the many individuals who engaged in the on-campus interviews and provided feedback to the committee. I hope everyone will join me in congratulating and welcoming Dr. Yates to Ferris State University.”