Nazarbayev University Appoints New Provost

Professor Ilesanmi Adesida has been appointed Provost at Nazarbayev University. He is a successful scientist and administrator in both scientific and educational circles. Prior to his appointment at Nazarbayev University, Professor Ilesanmi served as Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC).

As Nazarbayev University’s Provost Professor Adesida will oversee NU’s academic and research programs, including the awarding of research grants as well as overseeing the creation and implementation of quality assurance programs.

Professor Adesida received his Bachelor of Sciencein 1974, Master of Science in 1975, and Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering in 1979 from the University of California, Berkeley. From 1979 to 1984, he served as a Visiting Researcher and Assistant Professor at Cornell University. He was then head of the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University of Tafawa Balewa in Nigeria from 1985 to 1987. He joined the ranks of University of Illinois faculty in 1987, where he was a Professor of Engineering Sciences, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering, as well as Special Advisor on International Programs.

He served as the Director of the Laboratory of Micro- and Nanotechnology from 2000 to 2005, as well as the Director of the Center for Nanoscale Sciences and Technologies from 2001 to 2012. In addition, during those years, he was the Dean of the Faculty of Engineering. He also nurtured a number of national and international partnerships in the field of education, research, and innovation entrepreneurship.

Professor Adesida has published more than 350 peer-reviewed articles and has made more than 250 presentations at international conferences. He has worked with numerous post-doctoral research staff and trained many graduate students in his research laboratory. He is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Vacuum Society, Optical Society of America and the Materials Research Society. He was awarded the Oakley Kunde for Excellence in Undergraduate Education. He was named an outstanding graduate of the Department of EECS, University of California, Berkeley. He was awarded the IEEE EDS for special merits in 2011. In 2016 he won the TMS Prize for outstanding contributions to electronic materialsin the category of John Bardeen functional materials. Professor Adesida was also a member of the Board of ASEE Engineering Deans and acted as chairman of its Public Policy Committee from 2009 to 2011.

He was Chairman of the session of the 5th Global University Summit held in Chicago in 2012, which was attended by the presidents and chancellors of the largest international universities to discuss the development of talents for the world economy.

He has served as Chairman of the NSF Engineering Advisory Board, NSF Waterman Award Committee member, and worked for CIC and Provost Committees. He has worked in a number of committees of the National Academies and is a member of the prestigious National Academy of Engineering of the United States.

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