University News

Pratt Named Director of New School of Engineering at Western Illinois University

May 22, 2009

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MACOMB/MOLINE, IL -- William Pratt, director of the Utah Science Technology and Research (USTAR) program for the Southern Technology Outreach and Innovation Program, has been named the director of Western Illinois University's new School of Engineering, effective June 8, according to College of Business and Technology Dean Tom Erekson.

Pratt has served as director of the USTAR program since 2007. He previously served as associate professor and interim department chair of the integrated engineering and technology department at Southern Utah University (Cedar City, UT) where he helped develop the first integrated engineering program in the United States. Prior to that, Pratt was chief executive officer and chief scientist for Patterned Fiber Composites, Inc.; an independent engineering and program management consultant, new business development manager and senior program manager for EDO Corporations Acoustic Division; and manufacturing engineer for Morton Thiokol. Pratt owns several U.S. patents and has significant ABET experience.

"We are pleased to have Dr. Pratt join our team as the director of the new School of Engineering. He brings a wealth of experience to WIU that aligns with our goals in developing the new engineering program and obtaining ABET accreditation," Erekson noted. "His involvement in corporate alliances and economic development are true assets."

Pratt earned his Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and master's in engineering management degrees from Brigham Young University and his bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering from the U.S. Military Academy.

Pratt's office will initially be located at the WIU-Quad Cities 60th Street campus. In August, the School of Engineering will be located in The Caxton Block Building, 1701 River Dr., Moline. In March, Western's Board of Trustees approved a lease agreement with Ruhl & Ruhl Commercial Company to lease The Caxton Block Building to temporarily house the new WIU-Quad Cities engineering program which begins in Fall 2009.

The Caxton Block Building is close to the WIU-QC Riverfront Campus and is part of the City of Moline's Mississippi River Urban Technology Corridor.

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