The College of Engineering and Physical Sciences (CEPS) strives to bring U of G’s ‘Improve Life’ motto to fruition through academic excellence and interdisciplinary research, with the vision to be recognized as a leader in innovative and influential solutions for our world through computer science, engineering, mathematics, and physical sciences learning and research. 

To further advance CEPS’ mission, I am pleased to share that Dr. Moncef Nehdi will assume a five-year appointment as dean, effective September 1. Prior to U of G, Nehdi has served as professor and chair in the Department of Civil Engineering at McMaster University since January 2022 and as a professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering at Western University from 2007 to 2021. A prolific author, Nehdi has authored more than 470 research publications and was listed by Elsevier and the Shanghai Global Ranking in the World’s top 60 most impactful civil engineers.  

Moncef Nehdi's headshot. He has short dark hair and is wearing a grey blazer with a light-blue shirt and red tie against a blurry background.As an experienced Canadian academic leader, Nehdi brings a proven track record of fostering excellence in higher education and advancing Indigenization equity, diversity, inclusion (IEDI) and accessibility. At McMaster, he exceeded the goal of having 30 per cent women faculty in his department by 2030, founded initiatives to involve Indigenous knowledge in teaching and research and advanced IEDI training in his department. He is also well-positioned to advance U of G’s reputation as a leader in sustainability research with his expertise in sustainable construction as well as artificial intelligence and machine learning in civil engineering. 

“I am honoured to be chosen as the next dean of the College of Engineering and Physical Sciences at U of G,” said Nehdi. “I’m excited by the unique opportunity CEPS presents to champion transformative leadership and train professionals for the global grand challenges our world faces and look forward to collaboratively envisioning the future of the College.” 

As dean, Nehdi plans to cultivate consultive and open administration, rethink pedagogy in our teaching, strengthen research excellence, advance internationalism, prioritize resource management and fiscal responsibility, champion an inclusive culture and reimagine the future of the CEPS, including cultivating sustainable program growth. 

I would also like to take this opportunity to thank interim dean of CEPS Dr. Richard Zytner for his service as his term ends on June 30, 2024. Zytner has navigated the college through some unique challenges and opportunities since December 1, 2021, including impacts of our fiscal environment, CEPS student growth and college restructuring. Until Nehdi steps into the role in September, Dr. Karen Gordon, CEPS associate dean academic, will serve as interim dean for July and Dr. Monica Cojocaru, CEPS associate dean research and graduate studies, will serve for August.  

Please join me in congratulating Dr. Nehdi on his appointment and thanking Dr. Zytner for his service. 

Thank you, 

Gwen Chapman
Provost and Vice-President (Academic)