CECS 2016-2017 New Faculty

Graphical Version

CECS welcomes nine new faculty members for the 2016-2017 academic year


Abd A. Arkadan
Teaching Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
PhD Clarkson University

Arkadan’s teaching and research interests include energy conversion, electric machines and drives and design optimization using computation electromagnetics and artificial intelligence techniques. Prior to joining Mines, Arkadan was a research professor at Marquette University, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, where he began as an assistant professor in 1988. He also served as professor and president of Rafik Hariri University, Mechref, Lebanon from 2004-2014 His research applications are in renewable and efficient energy and power systems, micro-grids, onboard aerospace and marine power systems and hybrid electric vehicles. He is a fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a fellow of the Applied Computational Electromagnetics Society Arkadan is currently the chair of IEEE-CEFC International Steering Committee, ACES Journal Associate Editor, and a member of ACES Board of Directors.  


Chris Coulston
Teaching Associate Professor, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
PhD Pennsylvania State University

Coulston received a BA in physics from Slippery Rock University and earned a BS, MS and PhD in computer engineering from the Pennsylvania State University. He taught at the University Park campus from 1993-1998 and was granted tenure as an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering at Penn State Erie in 2006.  Starting in 2005, Coulston served as chairperson of several departments including Electrical Engineering, Computer Engineering, Software Engineering and Computer Science, leading the successful ABET accreditation of these programs over three review cycles.  In 2013, Coulston led an interdisciplinary group of faculty to start a game development minor across the Penn State system.  The following year, Coulston took a sabbatical and served as a Distinguished Visiting Professor at the United States Airforce Academy in Colorado Springs.



Kristine Csavina
Teaching Professor, Mechanical Engineering
PhD Arizona State University

Csavina received a BS in mechanical engineering from the University of Dayton and a PhD in bioengineering from Arizona State University. Csavina’s research interests include motion analysis of human motion in movement disorders, orthopedics and sports; human motion aided by wearable technologies; and engineering education research in student learning and pedagogical approaches. She was formerly an associate director for engineering program innovation in The Polytechnic School of Engineering and Manufacturing Engineering in the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at ASU. She was the lead instructor for the senior capstone design experience, where she taught design and professional skills and managed over 20 student teams on eProjects (industry-partnered capstone experiences). She was also active with the ABET accreditation, helping to develop the course assessment and program evaluation process for the department. Prior to ASU, Csavina was a founding faculty in the U.A. Whitaker College of Engineering at Florida Gulf Coast University. As an assistant professor, she helped develop the curriculum for the bioengineering design courses and biomechanics and was involved in teaching courses from the sophomore to senior levels. Csavina had active research in biomechanics in partnership with physical therapy faculty at FGCU, including studies with Parkinson’s disease and stroke patients.


Gregory Fasshauer
Professor and Department Head, Applied Mathematics and Statistics
PhD Vanderbilt University

Fasshauer spent the last 19 years at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, where he was a professor and associate department chair of applied mathematics. While there, he helped create an environment for excellence in teaching and learning as the Director of Undergraduate Studies in the Applied Math Department and as a Distinguished Teaching Fellow of the College of Science. Fasshauer holds Diplom and Staatsexam degrees in mathematics and English from the University of Stuttgart in Germany, as well as a MA and PhD in mathematics from Vanderbilt University. Fasshauer also spent two years as a visiting assistant professor in the mathematics department at Northwestern University. Fasshauer’s research interests lie in computational mathematics with a particular focus on the theory and applications of kernel-based approximation methods.



Karin Leiderman Gregg
Assistant Professor, Applied Mathematics and Statistics
PhD University of Utah

Karin Leiderman joined the faculty as an assistant professor in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Statistics. She worked as an assistant professor of applied mathematics in the School of Natural Sciences at the University of California Merced for the past four years. Prior to joining the faculty at UC Merced, she was a visiting assistant professor in the Department of Mathematics at Duke University and received her PhD in mathematics from the University of Utah. For her PhD thesis, she developed a spatial-temporal mathematical model of the formation of blood clots under flow and was awarded the SIAM student paper prize for this work. For her postdoc, she worked to develop numerical methods for fluid/structure interaction problems involving low Reynolds number and porous media flow. Leiderman’s research aims at understanding biological systems through the use of mathematics, mathematical modeling and numerical computation. She also has general interest and expertise in computational modeling of blood clotting, biological fluid dynamics, biomechanics, biochemistry, flow through porous materials and scientific computing.


Kristoph-Dietrich Kinzli
Teaching Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering
PhD Colorado State University

Kinzli graduated from Colorado State University with a BS in civil engineering. During his time as an undergraduate student, he also studied at the Technische Universitaet Dortmund in Germany. He also obtained a MS in civil engineering, MS in fisheries biology and PhD in civil engineering from Colorado State University. His dissertation research focused on improving irrigation water use efficiency along the Middle Rio Grande. Kinzli has worked on research projects in Colorado with the Department of Fish and Wildlife and in New Mexico with the Interstate Stream Commission, the Bureau of Reclamation, New Mexico Tech and the Middle Rio Grande Conservancy District. His research interests include engineering teaching pedagogy, open channel hydraulics, river mechanics, stream rehabilitation, groundwater, water resources, agricultural water use, fisheries biology and ecological restoration. Kinzli is highly involved with the ASCE ExCEEd Teaching Workshop and was selected as an assistant mentor three times.  In 2014 Dr. Kinzli was awarded the ASCE ExCEED New Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award and in 2015, he was selected to attend the NAE Frontiers of Engineering Education Symposium.


Ashlyn Munson
Teaching Associate Professor, Applied Mathematics and Statistics
PhD Colorado School of Mines

Munson completed her PhD in statistics at Mines, with a focus on efficient methods of case-control sampling under the advisement of Dr. William Navidi. She spent the last seven years as an assistant professor in the mathematics department at Pacific Lutheran University in Tacoma, Washington, where she advised the statistics minor within the natural sciences. While at PLU, her research efforts mainly focused on the assessment and development of new curriculum methodology in the STEM disciplines.





Oyvind Nilsen
Teaching Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering
PhD University of Colorado Boulde

Nilsen grew up in Tønsberg, Norway where he earned a mechanical engineering degree and later earned his PhD in mechanical engineering from the University of Colorado. Nilsen’s interests include product development and innovations, and his expertise is in design, manufacturing, advanced system integration, thermal and fluidic system design as well as optics and sensors. His research experience also involves mechanics of materials, optics, sensors, physical modelling and MEMS and microfluidics. Nilsen was also the Director of Manufacturing and the cofounder of BiOptix Diagnostics Inc., where he took a technology he developed an optical biosensor system. He also has industrial experience, designing tools for the oil industry and experience as a naval officer.



Andrew Petruska
Assistant Professor, Mechanical Engineering
PhD University of Utah

Petruska graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with dual BS degrees in mechanical engineering and physics as well as a MS in mechanical engineering. He worked as a design engineer at ATK Launch Systems in Utah and was responsible for designing, testing and qualifying solid rocket motor components. In 2010, he was awarded a National Science Foundation Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship to study noncontact magnetic manipulation at the University of Utah. He received his PhD after developing the first real-time reconfigurable magnetic manipulation system. Petruska joined the Multiscale Robotics Laboratory in the Institute of Robotics and Intelligent Systems at ETH Zürich and was awarded a Max Planck ETH Center for Learning Systems fellowship, where he currently is investigating the magnetic manipulation of needles, endoscopes and catheters. His research interests are in the areas of complex system modeling and design, dynamics and control, advanced magnetic manipulation and search-and-rescue robotics.


Font Size