Matt Huenerfauth Appointed Dean of Golisano College of Computing and Information Sciences

Matt Huenerfauth has been appointed Dean of the Golisano College of Computer Science and Information Science at the Rochester Institute of Technology.

Huenerfauth, a computer accessibility expert and president of RITs School of information (iSchool) of the past two years, was chosen after an international search. He will take over the role on July 1.

“Matt stood out among a very strong candidate field because of his significant leadership experience — both at RIT and other institutions — and his ideas about improving the college’s student success and expanding its research portfolio,” said Ellen Granberg, RIT Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs. “He is someone who understands both how to establish a vision for the college and how to execute and realize that vision.”

Huenerfauth joined RIT in 2014 after serving as associate dean for the Department of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at the City University of New York (CUNY) Queens College. At RIT he created the Center for Accessibility and Inclusion (CAIR)where he and a team of students and faculty researchers explore technologies to make technology accessible to all users, including people who are deaf or hard of hearing, those who are blind or visually impaired, and older adults.

Throughout his career, Huenerfauth has secured more than $5.25 million in research funding, including a CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation. His research examines how artificial intelligence technology can benefit people who are deaf or hard of hearing and people with low written literacy. He works with a team of more than 30 research faculties and students operating bilingually in English and American Sign Language.

“As one of the largest computer science and information science colleges in the world, GCCIS is in a unique position to educate and inspire the next generation of leaders in the computer industry,” said Huenerfauth. “I am grateful for the efforts of our faculty and staff throughout the university, and I look forward to supporting them in preparing our students for great careers and opportunities.”

Huenerfauth is the author of more than 120 peer-reviewed scientific articles, chapters and papers. In 2017, the Association for Computing Machinery recognized him as an ACM Distinguished Member for his contributions to the computing field. At the ACM SIGACCESS Conference on Computing and Accessibility, the premier international scientific venue in the field, Huenerfauth has won the Best Paper Award five times – more than anyone in the history of the conference. He has also served as editor-in-chief of the magazine ACM transactions on accessible computersTACCES

In 2018, he received the RIT’s Trustees Scholarship Award, the university’s highest award for faculties in recognition of research achievements.

“As someone who is drawn to computers for the powerful way technology can help people and break down barriers, I know the importance of sharing with students how computers can address scientific, economic and social challenges,” Huenerfauth says. “While some students are attracted to computers because of their interest in technology, there are many talented students who never consider a career in computer science because they don’t see themselves as a ‘computer person’ or people like them not represented in the field. I am excited about the university’s journey and our potential for further growth in the diversity of students and faculties.”

Huenerfauth received his Ph.D. in computer science and information science from the University of Pennsylvania in 2006. He lives with his husband in Brighton, NY

Hunerautouth takes over from Anne Haake

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