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MORGAN WOOS TOP SCIENTIST AS NEW SCIENCE DEAN

Morgan State University President David Wilson announced today the appointment of Hongtao Yu as

dean of the School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences (SCMNS). He comes to Morgan

from Jackson State University in Jackson, Mississippi.

“I am pleased to welcome Dr. Yu to the administrative team at Morgan,” said President Wilson. “This is a

critical time for minorities in the STEM fields in America and Morgan is playing an important role in

helping to educate a diverse group of future scientists. We believe Dr. Yu comes to us well-prepared to

provide the kind of leadership that will drive Morgan’s School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural

Sciences to have an even greater impact on the production of minority scientists and mathematicians.”

Dr. Yu is a faculty member and chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry in the College of

Science, Engineering and Technology at Jackson State. His department has been ranked among the top

50 chemistry departments in the nation, a distinction achieved by no other HBCU in the nation. He has

been recognized for his vision and dedication towards recruiting, developing relationships with high

schools and other colleges, developing faculty and student mentorship programs, and for assisting

students in the pursuit of advanced degrees. Outside of his university responsibilities, he also served as

President of the Mississippi Academy of Science.

Dr. Yu received his baccalaureate degree from the Department of Chemistry, University of Science and

Technology of China (1982); his master’s degree from the Institute of Chemistry, Chinese Academy of

Sciences (1986); and, his doctorate (Ph.D.) from the Institute for Organic and Biochemistry, Technical

University of Munich, Germany (1990).

Among Dr. Yu’s numerous awards and honors is the 2011 Stanley C. Israel (Southeast) Regional Award

for Advancing Diversity in the Chemical Sciences, the HBCU Pioneer Award from the National

Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE),

the Mississippi State Legislature HEADWAE Outstanding Faculty Honoree Award, and the National

ChemLuminary Award for “Best Activity with Underrepresented Minority Students and/or

Organizations” from the American Chemical Society.

“We are excited to have attracted someone of Dr. Yu’s caliber to lead our science programs,” said

President Wilson. “Our vision is to become the top research HBCU in the country over the next five-to-

ten years. With the recent appointment of Dr. Michael Spencer for engineering and now Dr. Yu for the

sciences, I believe we are closer to that goal. In fact, I plan to make the case to the state legislature for a

$125-million appropriation to construct at Morgan a new, world-class, state of the art science and

innovation complex.”

Morgan’s School of Computer, Mathematical and Natural Sciences (SCMNS) serves as home for five of

the University’s academic departments (Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Mathematics, Computer Science)

and offers a variety of academic programs within these disciplines. SCMNS also offers students eight

undergraduate programs, five graduate programs, four research programs; three research centers; and

two all-encompassing student support programs. SCMNS also houses two professional programs that

fully equip students for careers in medical technology and actuarial science. Dr. Alvin Kennedy has

served as interim dean of the school for the last two years. Dr. Yu’s appointment is effective August 25,

2016.

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