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Chico State

David Alexander Named Dean of the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management

David Alexander
Jason Halley

A proud alumnus of Chico State, David Alexander returned to teach at his alma mater 10 years ago after many years in industry and academia.(Jason Halley/University Photographer/Chico State)

After a nationwide search, David Alexander has been named the new dean of the College of Engineering, Computer Science, and Construction Management (ECC). He begins his role July 1, 2024.

A proud alumnus, Alexander holds a PhD and an MS in mechanical engineering from the University of Idaho, and a BS in physical science from Chico State. He has been a member of our campus community since 2014, beginning his career here as an assistant professor and working his way up to vice chair of the Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing Department, associate professor, and interim associate dean and associate dean of ECC.

Before his career in academia, Alexander was the CEO and founder of IVUS Energy Innovations, a company dedicated to the introduction and commercialization of professional rechargeable flashlights. He was also president and principal mechanical engineer for Caelex Inc. for five years. His background in the technology industry combined with his teaching and research experience will be invaluable, as well as his experience securing project funding and understanding of enrollment marketing, philanthropy, and public-private partnerships.

Greg Watkins, who has served as interim dean since July 2023, commended Alexander’s selection as the permanent dean.

“David and I have worked together for more than a dozen years as we both served in the Department of Mechanical and Mechatronic Engineering and Advanced Manufacturing and then in the ECC Dean’s office,” he said. “David brings superior experience, professionalism, and vision to the dean position, and I’m confident in his ability to lead the college going forward.”

Alexander says his personal journey and experience at Chico State have been driving motivators for his career trajectory to date, and he is excited to lead the college’s next chapter. His vision is to make ECC recognized throughout the state and beyond as a destination college where students are immersed in hands-on, project-based learning in STEM and employers come to hire experienced, well-rounded professionals. 

Among his many goals, he plans to collaborate with campus divisions and programs and ECC’s MESA Engineering Program and the ECC Student Success Center to increase recruitment, retention, and graduation rates, especially for women and historically underserved groups. He also plans to focus attention on eliminating the persistent GPA equity gap.

“I look forward to supporting our world-class faculty in their teaching and research by expanding industry collaborations and securing new laboratory and teaching spaces. We have fantastic faculty, staff, and students,” Alexander said. “While we have a lot of work ahead of us, I’m hopeful and encouraged. I strongly believe in the mission of the CSU, and I am humbled to be able to contribute to the incredible work taking place every day on the Chico State campus, which has a direct and profound impact on the students and communities it serves.”