Dr. Nagi Naganathan officially began his duties as the 7th president of the Oregon Institute of Technology (Oregon Tech) on Monday, April 3. President Naganathan has been readying for his official start since November, when he was named president of the university by Oregon Tech’s Board of Trustees after a nationwide search. Prior to joining Oregon Tech, Dr. Naganathan was dean of engineering at the University of Toledo, served as UT’s interim president, and was the founding chairperson of the Mechanical, Industrial, and Manufacturing Engineering Department.
President Naganathan (Naw-ga-naw-thun) is joining Oregon Tech in its 70th year, when the university’s position is strong: enrollment continues to grow and is at an all-time record; new, in-demand bachelor’s and master’s degree programs are being launched at the Klamath Falls, Portland-Metro, and Online campuses; and emerging partnerships such as the Oregon Manufacturing and Innovation Center (OMIC) are expanding Oregon Tech’s industry relationships, applied research, and its students’ preparation for the workforce. Oregon Tech will also announce later this month its new student success rates and average starting salary figures for the Class of 2016, which have increased significantly over the last year.
As part of his inaugural week, the campus community, as well as dignitaries from the Oregon Tech and OT Foundation Boards and the Klamath Falls community, came together this afternoon to welcome Dr. Naganathan and his wife, Dr. Kasturi (Cus-thoo-ree) Naganathan.
“As the new person coming in, it is clear to me how invested you all are in Oregon Tech,” said Dr. Naganathan. “There is a tremendous amount of pride here in building together a unique place where students are encouraged to innovate and take risks, where faculty approach teaching in ways that create relevant experiences; and staff provide layers of support that ensure Oregon Tech is effective and focused on our shared mission. I have been learning how passionate you are about our students and their success, their ability to thrive when they leave Oregon Tech, and the growing demand by industry to hire our graduates.
“I am committed to working with faculty to move forward the academic enterprise with new programs and new resources that will attract and retain diverse students, and give them the education and professional practice that all but guarantees success,” added President Naganathan.
Dr. Naganathan is joining Oregon’s other public university presidents at a time when they are collectively advocating for more funding for Oregon’s students in the 2017 Legislative Session. With current public university funding levels holding at the same levels as seen in 2007-09, presidents are seeking investments that ensure affordable tuition, balanced with funding for the types of student supports that increase retention and graduation rates, and enable a shorter time-to-degree.
About Oregon Tech
Founded in Klamath Falls in 1947, Oregon Institute of Technology is the premier public polytechnic university the Pacific Northwest. Oregon Tech provides degree programs in engineering, technology health technologies, management, communication, and applied sciences that prepare students to be effective participants in their professional, public, and international communities through hands-on, applied learning. Oregon Tech has a full-service, residential campus in Klamath Falls, an urban, industry-focused campus in Wilsonville, an Online campus, as well as other degree delivery sites at Seattle-Boeing and partner community colleges. Visit www.oit.edu to learn more about Oregon Institute of Technology.