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New Academic Year Brings Two New Department Heads
September 4, 2015
Rose-Hulman has started the 2015-16 academic year with two new academic department heads—J.P. Mellor, for the Department of Computer Science and Software Engineering; and Galen Duree, for the Department of Physics and Optical Engineering.
Mellor specializes in the role of vision in human-computer interaction and computer graphics, and he has significantly revised Rose-Hulman’s computer architecture course. He was director of the Imaging Systems Laboratory, and has taught courses in operating systems, computer vision, computer graphics, and introduction to computer systems.
Mellor’s research activities have included work in the field of automated methods for reconstructing 3D geometry, computer vision techniques for human-computer interaction, and enhanced-reality visualization.
A member of the faculty since 1999, Mellor earned a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from the U.S. Naval Academy, and a bachelor’s degree in nuclear technology from the University of the State of New York. Master’s and doctorate degrees in electrical engineering and computer science followed from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he was a research assistant for the Artificial Intelligence Laboratory.
Meanwhile, Duree has earned the Dean’s Outstanding Teacher Award, has served as director of Rose-Hulman’s Center for Applied Optics Studies, and authored Wiley Publishing's Optics for Dummies, which has helped introduce optics concepts to people throughout the world. He worked with the Naval Surface Warfare Center in Crane, Indiana to establish the institute’s Ultrashort Pulse Laser Laboratory, and worked with students and military officials to assist in the development of America’s guided missile defense system.
Duree, who also joined the Rose-Hulman faculty in 1999, enjoys introducing physics and optics principles to freshmen. His research interests include photorefractive phenomena and applications, nonlinear optics, laser physics, high power laser beam characterization instrumentation, and ultrashort pulse laser phenomena.
Duree earned his bachelor’s degree in physics from Northwest Nazarene College in Nampa, Idaho, his hometown. A doctorate degree in physics followed from the University of Arkansas-Fayetteville.
Mellor is replacing Cary Laxer in leading the department, while Duree is stepping into a role previously held by Charles Joenathan. Laxer and Joenathan have returned to teaching roles on the Rose-Hulman faculty.