Announcement from Laura Lawson, Interim Executive Dean, SEBS, and Interim Executive Director, NJAES.
June 9, 2022
Dear SEBS and NJAES Community,
For the past seven and a half years, Mukund Karwe has served as Dean of International Programs and has led our efforts to expand our global connections. Mukund will be stepping down as of June 30 to return to his research and teaching.
Mukund is a Distinguished Professor in Food Science. His research has covered the areas of food extrusion, jet impingement microwave hybrid baking, fortification of foods with Omega-3 fatty acids, and the effects of processing on nutraceuticals in foods. Most recently, his work has concentrated on high-pressure processing of food, mathematical modeling of human digestive system, and applications of cold plasma in food safety and hydroponics. He is a dedicated teacher and advisor who has won awards for teaching excellence at university and national levels. Prior to serving as Dean of International Programs, Mukund served as chair of the Department of Food Science for seven years and as undergraduate program director for eight years.
For all of us who have had the pleasure of working with our International Programs office, we know that they are a welcoming and effective group. Mukund has been an advocate for the team and has encouraged their professional development, networking, grantsmanship, and development of new programs. Rutgers Global holds our International Programs Office as a model for Rutgers.
Under Mukund’s leadership, the office has increased the number of study-abroad scholarships and has created more opportunities for students who wish to have an international experience.
Mukund has worked very hard to increase faculty engagement through the development of annual retreats and workshops. He has expanded partnerships throughout India and serves as liaison with Rutgers Global on many facets of engagement with India. During the Covid-19 pandemic, the entire Office of International Programs team worked tirelessly to make sure that the international students, who couldn’t leave the U.S., had food and supplies. They transformed many programs to be able to reach students remotely.
When I asked Mukund what he is most proud of from his time as Dean, he responded with the following:
“During my tenure as the Dean, we strengthened our relationship and worked more closely with RU Global. To my personal gratification, albeit on an informal basis, I have often heard from RU Global staff that they wish each school within Rutgers had a dedicated office such as the SEBS OIP. We organized three summer retreats to bring the international faculty/staff community closer together with an aim to increase synergies and promote more international activities. We significantly increased study abroad scholarship opportunities for our students and we designed programs for our international students to ensure their wellbeing on campus.
I had wonderful supporting staff without whom I would not have been able to serve as the Dean of International Programs. I want to specifically mention Megan Francis for her role as the Assistant Dean, and Hyunjin Yeo and Angela Bublitz for their roles as program coordinators.
I want to thank former Executive Dean Bob Goodman for entrusting me with this position and Interim Executive Dean Laura Lawson for her support.”
Megan Francis will step in to lead the office. She will join the school’s leadership team to advocate and advance our commitment to international student experience and global research and engagement/outreach. We will have more information soon about new opportunities this Office is developing, including their close work with our new Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
Thank you, Mukund, for all your service to SEBS and Rutgers.