2019 Archives

SMU names new Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs

Elizabeth Loboa believes a focus on mission provides opportunities

December 9, 2019

Elizabeth Loboa

DALLAS (SMU) – Elizabeth Loboa will join SMU as provost and vice president for academic affairs on July 6, 2020. As chief academic officer for the University, she will be responsible for the overall quality of teaching, scholarship and research and all aspects of academic life, ranging from admissions and faculty development to supervision of SMU’s eight schools, library system, and international programs.

Loboa, a biomedical engineer, is currently vice chancellor for strategic partnerships and dean and Ketchum Professor of the College of Engineering at the University of Missouri. She brings to SMU a distinguished academic record and broad university leadership experience.

“Dr. Loboa is joining SMU at an exciting time, as we launch a new graduate school and strengthen our commitment to both world-changing research and teaching,” said SMU President R. Gerald Turner. “Her proven track record in building and supporting partnerships both inside and outside the academy is exactly what we are looking for as SMU reaches out for collaborations that serve both Dallas and our global community.”

As one of the co-leaders, Loboa was instrumental in the largest capital research project ever undertaken at the University of Missouri – the $221 million NextGen Precision Health Institute. She worked to bring together the assets of five MU colleges – Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources, Arts & Science, Engineering, Medicine, and Veterinary Medicine – in partnership with the Truman VA Hospital, the MU Research Reactor, and MU Healthcare

“Such collaborative, interdisciplinary approaches are key to academic success,” Loboa said. “Major changes occurring in higher education require that universities work creatively and collaboratively, because innovation lies at the intersection of different fields, different disciplines and different backgrounds. Making sure we work at those intersections will create real opportunities for SMU, and I am thrilled at the opportunity to pursue them.”

Loboa joined the University of Missouri as dean of the College of Engineering in October 2015, where she oversees more than 140 faculty members and approximately 3,500 undergraduate and graduate students. While retaining her role as dean, she assumed the larger role of vice chancellor of strategic partnerships in 2018. Loboa previously served as associate chair and professor of the Joint Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill and North Carolina State University, and as a professor of materials science and engineering at North Carolina State University

She received both her Ph.D. in mechanical engineering and her master’s degree in biomechanical engineering from Stanford, and earned her bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from UC-Davis.

Loboa’s appointment ends a nationwide search through a committee led by Meadows School of the Arts Dean Sam Holland. She replaces former Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven C. Currall, who left SMU to become the president of the University of South Florida July 1, 2019.

“This position attracted a large number of top-notch candidates,” Holland said. “The campus community was engaged in hearing from each of the finalists, and we are delighted that Dr. Loboa will be joining us this summer.”

“We are also grateful for the fine work that Peter Moore has done, and will continue to do for the next six months, as our provost and vice president for academic affairs ad interim,” Turner said. “The continuity he provides is important to the University.”

Loboa has been recognized for her work as an engineer, inventor, researcher and leader. She is a fellow in the National Academy of Inventors, the Biomedical Engineering Society and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering. She earned the Insight into Diversity Giving Back Award, the Sigma Xi Faculty Research Award, the Ralph E. Power Junior Faculty Award and the UK-US Stem Cell Collaboration Development Award. Loboa also is the recipient of the University of California-Davis Distinguished Engineering Alumni Medal as well as the Stanford University Distinguished Alumni Scholar Award.

Currently, Loboa serves on the advisory boards of the Association of American Universities’ Strategy for Sexual Harassment and Gender Discrimination Advisory Board and the Columbia Business Times; the board of directors of the Heart of Missouri United Way and the Missouri Innovation Center; the executive council of the Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine International Society, Inc.; and on the nominations committee for the American Institute for Medical and Biomedical Engineering, among others. She is a director of the Engineering Deans Council for the American Society for Engineering Education.

Loboa is an editorial board member for Current Stem Cell Reports, Scientific Reports, Biomedical Materials, and Tissue Engineering.