Bill Taylor Guides Engineering in Cameroon

Associate Dean Bill Taylor of the School of Engineering (SOE) has returned from Cameroon, where he was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship to help guide the development of a new engineering school. The Catholic University of Cameroon, Bamenda, is home to only the second English-speaking engineering school in a nation of 20 million people.

“The need for engineers in Africa is significant enough to establish the school, and so far they’ve admitted 70 to 80 students,” said Dr. Taylor, who is seasoned in engineering school accreditation procedures and curriculum development.

Dr. Taylor is one of approximately 1,100 U.S. faculty and professionals who traveled abroad through the Fulbright U.S. Scholar Program during the 2011-2012 academic year.

“Engineers — mechanical, civil, electrical, computer — you name it — are professionals in demand throughout Africa,” said Dr. Taylor before he left. “I expect to gain leadership skills from the experience and bring them back to Fairfield.”

Dr. Harvey Hoffman (left)  Dr. Ryan Munden (right)


  • SOE faculty led a “Train the Trainers” workshop during the summer, focusing on retaining middle school and high school students in the computer-related disciplines. The workshop hosted 15 area high school and middle school teachers, and was supported by the Google Foundation and private donations.
    n Thanks to a $50,000 grant from the Earl and Hilda Brinkman Family Foundation, the School of Engineering will purchase additional state-of-the-art, hands-on laboratory equipment to help students master the fundamentals. The new teaching tools include a suite of innovative computers and computer simulation software. The equipment will help students learn about all facets of engineering and prepare them for careers in biomedical sciences, digital communications, and software design, among other industries.
  • With support from the U.S. Department of Energy, Dr. Ryan Munden, assistant professor of electrical engineering, is working to make solar energy panels more efficient and economical. He spent his sabbatical on his design at Long Island’s Brookhaven National Laboratory.
  • Dr. Harvey Hoffman has been asked to serve as a member of the 2012 Board of Examiners for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award. The Baldrige Award is given to an organization for an outstanding system for managing its products, services, human resources, and customer relationships.