May 19, 2021
Dr. Alisha Sarang-Sieminski has been named Dean of the College, Olin Provost Mark Somerville announced on April 22, 2021.
Sarang-Sieminski, who uses they/them pronouns, has been at Olin for over 15 years and has established themself as a well-respected faculty member and institutional leader.
This new position, which will replace the Dean of Student Affairs position, will further knit together Olin’s approach to extracurricular, residential, and curricular aspects of student development and, in addition, will support the Student Affairs and Resources (StAR) team of professionals in their work to foster students’ development. The position includes explicit attention to a holistic approach to supporting students across their entire undergraduate experience.
Sarang-Sieminski said, “I’m thrilled to be taking on this role because of the amazing work the StAR team is already doing to support students and because I see additional opportunity to more tightly weave the fabric of student experience across Academic Life.”
“I am looking forward to working with Alisha in this new role,” said Olin College Provost Mark Somerville. “I believe this structure presents an exciting opportunity for Olin given our holistic and integrated model. Alisha believes in a collaborative and cross-functional approach to supporting student development; has a strong commitment to, and track record of, supporting equity and access for students as well as colleagues; and is a capable and effective manager who takes a compassionate approach to College operations.”
Sarang-Sieminski is currently an associate dean of the faculty and professor of engineering at Olin College. They were also previously the director of SCOPE. They have a B.S. in chemical engineering from MIT, a Ph.D. in bioengineering from the University of Pennsylvania, and did their postdoctoral work in the Biological Engineering Division at MIT. Sarang-Sieminski is passionate about undergraduate STEM education, using design to make a difference in people’s lives, and bringing an equity and access lens to engineering education. Their previous work at Olin has focused on supporting faculty development around issues of equity and inclusion and improving integration of supports across the first-year curriculum. They are also extensively involved in equity and inclusion work within the engineering education community through publications, speaking engagements, and trainings.
Although the Dean of the College role doesn’t include oversight of curricular activities, Sarang-Sieminski will draw upon their experience and connections in the curricular space in their approach to student development. Most importantly, Sarang-Sieminski has a passion for an integrated approach to student development, which includes a deep appreciation of the critical role of the many facets of support for student development represented within StAR.