RIYADH: NEOM on Wednesday announced the appointment of Dr. Andreas Cangellaris as the founding president of NEOM U – the megacity city’s first university.
Dr. Cangellaris is joining NEOM from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, where he is the M. E. Van Valkenburg Professor in electrical and computer engineering and has been serving as vice-chancellor for academic affairs and provost since 2018.
Dr. Cangellaris will lead the development of NEOM U on its journey to become a pre-eminent knowledge institution that supports NEOM’s vision as an innovation hub. It will be a university without boundaries, leveraging next-generation educational technologies with on-site and online learning.
Commenting on the new appointment, Nadhmi Al-Nasr, CEO of NEOM, said: “Education is central to achieving NEOM’s vision and ambitious goals. I am delighted that we have attracted a person of the caliber of Dr. Cangellaris to lead one of the critical pillars of our education sector.
“NEOM U is our first step toward developing a postsecondary education that is accessible to all, attracting the brightest students from all over Kingdom and the world. We want it to be a differentiator and a powerful signal of NEOM’s commitment to pioneering ideas in a world inspired by innovation.”
Initial academic and research programs will cover computer science, engineering and design, media, art and entertainment, as well as business. One common theme will be a CS+X undergraduate core curriculum rooted in the natural sciences, arts, humanities and social sciences.
I am delighted that we have attracted a person of the caliber of Dr. Cangellaris to lead one of the critical pillars of our education sector.
Dr. Cangellaris has overseen the academic and research programs of a highly regarded US academic institution with over 50,000 students, 15 colleges and 150+ programs of study and in excess of $600 million in annual research expenditures.
A distinguished scholar in the fields of computational electromagnetics and electronic design automation, he received his bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering from the University of Thessaloniki, Greece and his graduate degrees, a master of science and Ph.D., in electrical engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.
Commenting on his appointment, Dr. Cangellaris said: “I am thrilled and honored to have been given the opportunity to be the founding president of NEOM U, to help build it and to lead it in its quest to inspire, catalyze, foster and enable the positive change NEOM aspires to bring to the world.”
Dr. Jean-Lou Chameau, the chair of the International Steering Council that advises NEOM, said: “Dr. Cangellaris can drive NEOM U’s efforts to become a destination as a global university for the best scholars and students.”