Carnegie Mellon University today announced as the new head of its computer science department a professor instrumental in updating the university's introductory computer science curriculum.
Frank Pfenning, a professor of computer science, succeeds Jeannette Wing, who left Carnegie Mellon after being hired to head Microsoft Research International. Mr. Pfenning's appointment is effective immediately, the university said.
Mr. Pfenning began his employment with Carnegie Mellon as a research associate in 1986, and a statement announcing his appointment noted his research focus on applications of mathematical logic in computer science. The school said that emphasis includes "design of programming languages, systems for reasoning about computer programs and logics for ensuring computer security."
School of Computer Science Dean Randal Bryant said the new department head has been active at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.
"At the undergraduate level, Frank has taught an amazing array of courses, from the very theoretical, such as mathematical logic, to the very applied, such as computer systems and computer graphics," he said in a statement. "At the graduate level, he served as director of the computer science Ph.D. program, keeping track of the progress of around 150 Ph.D. students. He also served on the committee that designed our recently introduced computer science masters program."
Mr. Pfenning was born in Russelsheim, Germany and studied mathematics and computer science at the Technical University Darmstadt, Carnegie Mellon said. He received a master's degree in mathematics in 1981 and a Ph.D. in mathematics in 1986 from Carnegie Mellon.
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