Indian-American appointed interim head of Michigan State University

Professor and top administrator at Michigan State University, Satish Udpa, was appointed Interim President of MSU Jan. 17, by the board, replacing John Engler who resigned under fire for comments about victims of sexual abuse. (Photo:

An Indian-American engineer was appointed interim president of Michigan State University after the former president resigned under fire for his comments relating to the victims of the infamous U.S.A. Gymnastics doctor Larry G. Nassar, accused in numerous cases of sexual assault.

On Jan. 17, the board of trustees of Michigan State appointed Satish Udpa to replace John Engler, who was “roundly condemned’ for his comments that implied the young girls who were victimized by Nassar were enjoying the spotlight, the New York Times and other media outlets reported.

According to his bio on the MSU website, Udpa, who joined MSU in 2001, has been a top administrator at the University, also serving consecutively as executive vice president for Administrative Services and is a University Distinguished Professor. He served as dean of the College of Engineering and chair of the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at MSU before his current appointment as interim president.

Udpa was the Whitney Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Iowa State University. He was on the faculty at Colorado State University prior to his time at Iowa State University.

As an electrical and computer engineer, Udpa’s research interests span the broad area of materials characterization and nondestructive evaluation, and he has published extensively, holds several patents and serves as editor of several journals, the website says.

He is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the American Society for Nondestructive Testing, the Indian Society for Nondestructive Testing, and the Engineering Society of Detroit. He is a full member of the Academia NDT International, “a body that is evidence of the science in the NDT (nondestructive technology) field at the highest level,’ according to the organization’s website.

Udpa also served as the permanent secretary of the World Federation of Nondestructive Evaluation Centers from 1998 to 2003. He has a Ph.D. in electrical engineering from Colorado State University.




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