Posted February 5, 2013

Hai-Lung Dai named Temple University provost

Ryan S. Brandenberg

Temple University President Neil Theobald announced Tuesday that Hai-Lung Dai has been appointed provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, effective immediately.

"Hai-Lung was the enthusiastic choice of the search committee, which was impressed by his vision, impeccable academic credentials and his collaborative work style," Theobald said in announcing the appointment. "In the months Hai-Lung has been interim provost, he has earned the trust of his colleagues across the university and worked tirelessly to improve the academic environment for our students.

"Hai-Lung combines the best traits of a dedicated researcher, an accomplished dean and effective administrator. His broad experience in teaching, research, and education makes him an outstanding choice to be provost, and I am confident that he will be an outstanding contributor to the university leadership team."

Dai said he was honored by the opportunity to serve as Temple's Provost.

"Temple has made great strides recently in improving education quality and service to students, strengthening the faculty, and enhancing campus facilities. President Theobald’s arrival has brought a new vision and enthusiasm for Temple to achieve at an even higher level of excellence," said Dai.

"These are both exciting and challenging times at Temple. I am honored by President Theobald’s entrusting in me this great responsibility, and I look forward to working with faculty and my colleagues to accomplish Temple’s mission in education and research," said Dai.

This is the latest in a series of new responsibilities for Dai since he arrived at Temple in 2007, when he became dean of the College of Science and Technology, Laura H. Carnell Professor of Chemistry and then also the senior vice provost for international affairs. Just five years later, he was appointed interim provost by Acting President Richard M. Englert.

Dai's tenure as dean was characterized by a major influx of world renowned faculty, almost tripling the research funding and new cutting-edge instruments, improving facilities including a new research and education building, and initiating transformative changes in education and services for students. New educational initiatives included revised curricula, research opportunities for undergraduates, a research-focused financial aid program, student career services, and the establishment of the TUteach program — a fundamentally new approach to educate high school math and science teachers.

As senior vice provost for international affairs, Dai oversaw Education Abroad, which manages study abroad and Temple’s overseas campus in Tokyo and Rome; International Programs, which facilitates and manages partnerships with foreign institutions and collaborative educational programs; International Students and Scholars Services; and International Student Recruiting and Admission. Under Dai's leadership, Temple created new dual bachelor’s-master’s degree and collaborative bachelor degree programs for international students with partner universities in Asia and a liaison office in Beijing coordinating collaborative programs and student recruiting; vastly expanded Temple’s partnerships all over the world; seen dramatic increase in number of international students; and raised awareness of globalization within Temple’s campus.

Dai's research in molecular and surface sciences, currently supported by grants from National Science Foundation, Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Laboratory, and American Chemical Society, has also been rewarding. He has published 160 articles, edited two books and five journal volumes and delivered more than 280 invited lectures and seminars in international and national meetings, research institutions and universities.

He has received numerous honors including a Dreyfus Foundation Teacher-Scholar Award, a Sloan Fellowship, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a Humboldt Fellowship from Germany, the Coblentz Prize in Molecular Spectroscopy, the Ellis Lippincott Award for Spectroscopy of the Optical Society of America, the Langmuir Lecturer Award in Colloid and Surface Chemistry of the American Chemical Society, the American Chemical Society Philadelphia Section Award, the Distinguished Achievement Award from the Institute of Chinese Engineers in the US, and several named lectureships from China, Japan, and the US.

Dai is a fellow of the American Chemical Society and the American Physical Society and served as the Chair of the APS Chemical Physics Division.

In addition to a gubernatorial appointment in the Pennsylvania State Board on Drug, Device and Cosmetic, Dai has served in and advised government agencies, professional societies, universities and research institutions in the United States as well as abroad.

He is the former conductor of Philadelphia's Chinese Musical Voices Choir and has conducted several orchestral concerts in the Philadelphia symphony hall.

A graduate of National Taiwan University, Dai holds a Ph.D. from the University of California at Berkeley and was a postdoctoral fellow at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In 1984 he joined as faculty at the University of Pennsylvania, where he was chair of the chemistry department, funding director of the Penn Science Teacher Institute, and the Hirschmann-Makineni Professor of Chemistry.