Hall of Fame Member Biographies

Dr. Randa Shehab

A native Oklahoman, Dr. Randa Shehab has devoted her entire career in higher education to broadening the access to, success of, and professional development for the entire community at University of Oklahoma’s college of engineering. After earning her bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in industrial engineering from that same institution, Shehab served as an ergonomics consultant to the manufacturing ergonomics laboratory at the General Motors Technical Center in Warren, Michigan, before finding her calling in education. She started her academic career as a professor of industrial engineering at her alma mater. She later served as the school’s director until she was named senior associate dean for the Gallogly College of Engineering and co-director for the Data Science and Analytics Institute, a capacity in which she continues to serve the university to this day.

Dr. Shehab’s focus in both research and education has been to provide opportunities for all students to be successful in engineering, regardless of their individual background or academic preparation. The author of more than 85 scholarly publications, mostly deriving from her research in equity and diversity in engineering education, Shehab has led transformative changes in engineering education at OU to better prepare students for a successful career in this multifaceted field. Recognizing the critical staffing needs of Oklahoma’s bustling aerospace and defense industries, she led renovation of the industrial engineering curriculum to incorporate systems-thinking, and she continues to spearhead collaborative partnerships with the U.S. Department of Defense aimed at further workforce development.

Shehab has also served as co-leader on the development of the university’s collaborative and interdisciplinary Data Science and Analytics Institute. The institute’s educational and workforce development programs provide learning opportunities at all levels that bridge fundamental computing knowledge, as well as systems and statistical thinking. In her role as senior associate dean, Shehab developed and launched the Engineering Pathways program, which provides various ways for students from across the state to nurture their interest in engineering, draw them to engineering disciplines, and support and mentor students as they progress through their degree program. A key Pathways initiative is the Engineering Catalyst program, which provides academic structure and support for motivated incoming engineering students who may be less prepared in certain areas for the discipline’s robust curriculum.

Hugely devoted to teaching, Dr. Shehab has trained and mentored more than 4,650 undergraduate students and served as advisor to more than 30 graduate students; however, her impact is multiplied through her programs that serve and support the students of the University of Oklahoma. She is also a member of the Institute of Industrial Engineers, the American Society for Engineering Education and the Human Factors and Ergonomics Society.