PROGRAM TEAM

Program Team

Project Lead:
Steve Wendel

Cohort 2 Project Team:
Ronald Bennett
Scott Danielson
Niaz Latif
Alanna Moravetz
Aco Sikoski
Steve Wendel
Mohammad Zahraee

Workshop Leaders:
Ronald Bennett
Alanna Moravetz

Support Team:
Sandy Feola
Theresa Fowler

Evaluator:
Elana Rucks

This Leadership Capacity Building Program Team brings a wealth of practical knowledge of industry, manufacturing, engineering technology, leadership, teaching and pragmatism for creating change. This group of individuals brings a range of experience that is a resource for you and your program that will provide instruction and coaching to help you design and implement the unique program you want to emerge from your planning.

Ronald J Bennett
Dr. Ronald J. Bennett, the Founding Dean of the School of Engineering at the University of St. Thomas, started teaching in the Engineering Graduate Program in 1987. Ron was active in buiding the engineering program, and in 1993 was named the Thwaits/3M Chair. During Ron’s tenure at UST, he began sevveral new degree programs, increased enrollments, introduced and developed the STEPs summer camp for girls and created the School of Engineering. Bennett holds a bachelor’s degree in physics and mathematics from the University of Wisconsin, Eau Claire; a Master of Science in Metallurgical Engineering and PhD in metallurgy from the University of Minnesota; and an MBA from the University of St. Thomas. Prior to joining the University of St. Thomas, Bennett held executive positions in industry for more than 20 years, working at BMC Industries, CPI (now Boston Scientific) and Teltech as well as in several entrepreneurial organizations. Bennett served as Executive Director of the Minnesota Center for Engineering and Manufacturing Excellence (MnCEME). His current focus is on webinars and workshops on leadership for engineers in industry and academia. Bennett has a variety of academic publications, and is co-author with Elaine Millam of the 2012 McGraw-Hill book “Leadership for Engineers: The Magic of Mindset.” He has been active in SME's Manufacturing Education & Research Community and its Accreditation Committee. Bennett currently has served as an ABET Engineering Accreditation commissioner and has been leader of SME’s Center for Education.

Scott Danielson
Scott Danielson is the Associate Dean for Global Engineering within the Fulton Schools of Engineering, Arizona State University. He is a registered Professional Engineer with over 33 years of broad-based experience encompassing both industry and academia. Previously, Dr. Danielson had been the Associate Dean for Academic Programs in the College of Technology and Innovation at Arizona State University’s Polytechnic campus for the last two and half years. In that role, he was responsible for support of academic program development and associated interactions with University leadership and external partners. Related international program development includes helping to develop innovative educational partnerships with Chinese universities and currently acting as project director of an USAID funded Vietnamese educational capacity development and academic leadership development program. Before assuming the Associate Dean’s role, he had been a department chair for over 13 years. He has been awarded the ASME Ben C. Sparks Medal in 2009 and 2013 for excellence in mechanical engineering education. Service to the profession has included leadership roles in four national professional organizations - ASME, ABET, SME, and ASEE. He serves on the Executive Committee of the Engineering Technology Accreditation Commission of ABET, Inc. He is active in the American Society for Mechanical Engineers (ASME); serving as a member and co-editor of the Vision 2030 Task Force, serving on the Committee on Engineering Technology Accreditation in a variety of roles, serving on the Board of Directors of the ASME Center for Education for several years, and as a member of the Mechanical Engineering Technology Department Head Committee. He also serves on the Steering Committee of the Manufacturing Education and Research Community within SME. Research interests have included effective teaching, mechanics education, engineering databases, engineering uses of geographic information systems, and fluid dynamics.

Niaz Latif
Dr. Niaz Latif is the Dean of the College of Technology at Purdue University Calumet. He also served for two years as the Dean of the Graduate School and an additional two years as the Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies. In 2007, he joined Purdue University Calumet as the Dean of the College of Technology. Dr. Latif is the chief administrative and academic leader of the College of Technology at Purdue University Calumet. In this role, he promotes faculty teaching and scholarly work, and professional services through initiation, development, and implementation of strategic plans. He is personally responsible for overseeing seven undergraduate degree programs and two graduate programs housed in 3 academic departments in the College. In addition, Dr. Latif is the Executive Director of the Commercialization and Manufacturing Excellence Center at Purdue University Calumet. Dr. Latif has authored/co-authored numerous refereed journal articles and peer reviewed conference proceedings articles and has made national and international conference presentations. His publication record includes articles related to academic program development and assessment of academic programs. Dr. Latif received the Purdue University Calumet’s Outstanding Administrative Leader Award in 2012. He has been the Principal Investigator for National Science Foundation grants and a US Department of Labor grant. He has overseen more than eighty sponsored research/project grants with a value of more than $20 million. Dr. Latif is a commissioner of the ABET and also served on the Board of Engineering Technology Council under the American Society for Engineering Education. Dr. Latif was the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Engineering Technology. He is a fellow of the Academic Leadership Program under the Committee on Institutional Cooperation of Big 10 Universities.

Alanna Moravetz
Alanna Moravetz, J.D., has worked in human and organizational development for over 25 years as an educator, trainer, consultant and coach. Alanna understands the challenges that lawyers, law firms, and court systems face in today’s changing environment. Her professional development work equips lawyers with skills that build resilience and drive innovation and change. Alanna designs and delivers experiential professional development programs based upon cutting edge work. She assists individuals, work teams, and organizations to manage change and maximize effectiveness. Alanna is a Certified Coach from the Hudson Institute of Santa Barbara. She has the Experiential Learning with the Kolbs Certificate for Individuals, Teams, and Organizations from Case Western University as well as certification in the EQ in Action Profile. Alanna is a certified facilitator for Immunity to Change Workshops. Moravetz is a licensed attorney whose experience includes serving as the Director of Education and Organizational Development for the Minnesota Supreme Court, and Director of Career and Professional Development at the University of St. Thomas School of Law. In addition to owning Alanna Consulting Group, Alanna serves as an adjunct professor teaching leadership and professional development at the University of St. Thomas Graduate School of Engineering.

Aco Sikoski
Mr. Sikoski completed his Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering at the University of Kiril I Metodi in Skopje, Macedonia. He continued his education at Purdue University where he obtained his Masters of Science in Engineering. Intermittently, Mr. Sikoski has consulted for various institutions and organizations. In 1997, he started his career at Ivy Tech Community College where he has stayed until present. He served as a professor, program chair, dean, and the campus Vice Chancellor. As a program chair and dean, Mr. Sikoski was involved in developing several technology and engineering programs, including the Energy Technology and Pre-Engineering Program. Developing programs to meet industry workforce needs and student’s successes are his priorities. He served as an educational co-chair and chair of the curriculum committee of the Indiana Energy Consortium. He is a member of the Executive Board of Association of Technology Management and Applied Science and a visiting team member. Additionally, he serves on the advisory boards for College of Technology at Purdue University Calumet, Purdue University North Central and the Porter County Career Center. Through the years, he has been acutely involved in civic activities at the local and state levels. He is a member of the Rotary Club.

Steve Wendel
Steve Wendel serves as director of the National Center for Manufacturing Education (NCME). Originally established as a National Science Foundation Center of Excellence in the NSF Advanced Technological Education program, the NCME provides leadership development for deans, program chairs, faculty, and other educational leaders in manufacturing and engineering technology. Steve is also the director for the Project Lead The Way (PLTW) affiliate in Ohio. PLTW-OH has grown to over 340 programs in more than 150 school districts across Ohio preparing students for STEM career and college endeavors. Wendel is a mechanical engineering graduate of the University of Dayton with integrated manufacturing concentration, has extensive industrial experience in computer-aided design systems as applied to manufacturing.

Mohammad A. Zahraee
Mohammad A. Zahraee, Ph.D., P.E., is a professor of Mechanical Engineering Technology and Associate Dean for Graduate Studies at Purdue University Calumet. Mohammad joined Purdue University Calumet in 1989 and was the chair of the Manufacturing Engineering Technologies and Supervision from 1996 through 2007. He was also acting head of Electrical Engineering Technology from 2000 through December 2006. Zahraee served ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering, Technology, Computing, and Applied Sciences) from 1992 through 2010 as a program evaluator, commissioner (Accreditation Team Chair), as well as the national chair of the Technology accreditation commission of ABET during 2009-2010. He currently serves ABET as a member of its Board of Directors. As the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies, Mohammad chairs the Graduate Education Council in the College of technology, advises all incoming graduate students, and approves all graduation audits for graduate students. MS in technology at Purdue University Calumet has over 130 students, the third largest enrollment for such degree. Zahraee has authored and co-authored a large number of papers and conference proceedings in the areas of mechanical engineering technology education and Assessment, as well as technical papers in the areas of structural and mechanical vibrations. He is a past recipient of the ASME Ben C. Spark Medal, the SME Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award, and the Merl K. Miller Award for best paper in computers in Engineering Journal.