Don P. Giddens
Dean, College of Engineering
Georgia Institute of Technology
Back | Main | Next
P. Giddens, one of the nation's leading pioneers in
biomedical engineering, became Dean of the College
of Engineering at the Georgia Institute of
Technology on July 1, 2002.
Giddens, who has been associated with Georgia Tech
for over 30 years, is credited with developing
Georgia Tech's bioengineering program, enhancing its
research, commercialization and faculty and student
recruitment efforts, as well as catapulting the
bioengineering program to national stature. In 2001,
U.S. News and World Report ranked the program sixth
in the nation.
Giddens also made strong contributions to Georgia
Tech's aerospace engineering program and served as
chair of the department from 1988 to 1992.
Giddens joined Georgia Tech in 1968 and served as a
faculty member and administrator for almost 25 years
before accepting an appointment as dean of the
Whiting School of Engineering at Johns Hopkins
University from 1992 to 1997.
He returned to Georgia Tech in 1997 to explore a
joint partnership in bioengineering between Georgia
Tech and Emory University, which led to the creation
of what is now the Wallace H. Coulter Department of
Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Tech and Emory
University. This unique partnership between a public
university with a top engineering program and a
private university with a highly regarded medical
school is the first of its kind in the nation.
Giddens was named chair of the joint department in
1997 and holds the Lawrence L. Gellerstedt, Jr.
Chair in Bioengineering and is a Georgia Research
Alliance Eminent Scholar.
Giddens succeeds Jean-Lou Chameau, who vacated the
dean position in 2001 in order to assume his new
role as Provost and Vice President for Academic
"I am very pleased and honored to be the dean of
engineering at Georgia Tech," Giddens said. "Georgia
Tech's strong engineering programs, as well as its
interdisciplinary approach to education and
research, are a unique combination in higher
education. There is really no limit to what we can
accomplish and I look forward to the opportunity to
continue Tech's success."
Early in his career, Giddens became a pioneer in the
area of fluid dynamics in human arterial disease.
His work led to a better understanding of blood flow
and the noninvasive, early detection of artery
blockages that can lead to heart attacks. His
research has focused on biofluid mechanics,
specializing in vascular function, vascular grafts,
hemodynamics of carotid arteries, and measurement of
During Giddens' tenure as dean of engineering at
Johns Hopkins University, the school's faculty grew
by 29 percent, from 86 to 111, and annual research
expenditures nearly doubled to almost $30 million.
Seven junior faculty recruited under Giddens went on
to win presidential young investigator awards or
similarly prestigious young investigator awards from
the National Science Foundation or the Office of
Johns Hopkin's engineering school rose from the
unranked "second tier" in 1993 to 17th in the U.S.
News & World Report's "Best Graduate School"
engineering rankings in 1997, when Giddens left. The
school's ranking in the category of academic
reputation among engineering programs in the U.S.
rose from 18th to 13th during the same period.
Giddens has made major contributions in engineering
education, particularly in the developing field of
bioengineering. In addition to curriculum
development, he has been primary thesis advisor for
24 Ph.D. students and 15 masters students, and has
hosted eight postdoctoral fellows in his laboratory.
During his tenure at Georgia Tech, Giddens served as
a faculty member and administrator in Georgia Tech's
schools of aerospace, mechanical and biomedical
engineering. He was a principal Georgia Tech planner
in creating the Emory-Georgia Tech Biomedical
Technology Research Center, a joint venture between
Emory University and Georgia Tech. Giddens served as
co-director of the Emory-Georgia Tech Center from
1987 until 1992.
Giddens is active on advisory boards in
bioengineering, biomedicine and biotechnology. He is
a member of the National Academy of Engineering, and
is a Fellow of ASME, a Founding Fellow of the
American Institute of Medical and Biological
Engineers, and a Fellow of the Arteriosclerosis,
Thrombosis and Vascular Biology Council of the
American Heart Association, among various other
society memberships and activities.
He received a BAE and MSAE in aerospace engineering
from Georgia Tech, and a Ph.D. in aerothermodynamics
from Georgia Tech.
The College of Engineering at Georgia Tech is
comprised of nine schools and more than 30
interdisciplinary and specialty centers. The College
has 378 faculty members and 335 staff members.
Currently there are about 8,600 students enrolled in