Mohammad Alam’s new journey to CSET Dean

Before continuing his career at Minnesota State, Mohammad Alam held positions as an academic administrator for over 20 years. 

He started his career as an associate professor in 1997 at Purdue University, Fort Wayne. 

“In 1997 I became a tenured associate professor. The following year I became a full professor in the Purdue system. I also served as a member of the graduate faculty at Purdue University, West Lafayette, and Indiana University Bloomington.” 

From there he continued his career in the US at various different universities before coming to Minnesota. 

Engineering was not always in the plans for Alam but with the support and added motivation from his mother he continued to pursue a degree in engineering. Alam is originally from Bangladesh and said individuals must pass exams to study medicine and engineering, both of which he was accepted into. 

At the beginning of his academic studies, Alam almost left his place in engineering to pursue medicine.

“After my first week, I really didn’t like engineering. So I wanted to go back to medicine,” Alam said. His mother, however, pushed him to continue to pursue engineering.

His mother’s encouragement led him to the decision to major in electrical engineering.

“I always wanted to know how things work in engineering. So I approached or interacted with professors more closely compared to maybe my fellow students,” said Alam. 

Through his undergraduate studies, Alam found passion for educating others. 

“During that time I had a lot of interest in educating engineers. When I finished engineering, I was interviewed and hired as a lecturer in Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology,” Alam said.

After about three and a half years, Alam  decided to pursue advanced studies. He received a master’s degree in computer engineering from Wayne State University in Detroit and then finished his PhD at the University of Dayton in Ohio.

Through his time as an academic administrator, Alam has helped many people go through the programs he advised, saying “The thing that I liked the most is to interact with students and helping them to go through the program.” 

Because of his dedication to helping students, he has helped close to 75 individuals graduate, with almost all of them being well established in the industry and academia. 

Alam has made a huge effort in contributing to the success of first generation students. 

“Most importantly, I work quite a bit with first-generation students, students from underrepresented groups,” Alam said. 

He stated the best thing about being a professor is helping students go through the program and succeed.

Alam’s goals in this coming academic year is to understand the culture of the department and MSU.  

“I’d be very interested to bridge the equality gap under the Equality Act 2030. We’ll also focus in that area to see how we can help students from the underrepresented group to go through the program with a successful degree so that they can embark on an academic career.”

Header photo: Mohammad Alam recently became the new Dean of the College of Science, Engineering and Technology at Minnesota State. (Dylan Long/The Reporter)

Write to Andrea Schoenecker at

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