Santa Clara University


Faculty News

We have lots of news to share regarding our School of Engineering faculty. From new additions to tenure acceptances and awards, our professors continually bring honor and distinction to the School through their commitment to excellence.

New Faculty:

Christopher Kitts

Christopher Kitts has been appointed associate professor of mechanical engineering, having served as a research assistant professor for more than six years. In his role as director of the SCU Robotic Systems Laboratory, he has created an environment of enthusiasm and involvement that serves as a magnet to students and presents them with unique research opportunities.


Sarah Kate Wilson

Sarah Kate Wilson joins the electrical engineering department as assistant professor, and a David Packard Fellow, specializing in communications. Wilson has a distinguished background in both academia and industry. Lauded for her undergraduate and graduate teaching at Purdue University, she has also served as a consultant to a number of Silicon Valley companies. She is the editor for two IEEE journals, and has been honored by the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm for her work in promoting gender equity.


Wendelin Wright Wendelin Wright is the new Clare Boothe Luce assistant professor in mechanical engineering in the area of materials. Wright worked as a post-doctoral research staff member at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory before taking a position as an acting assistant professor of materials science and engineering at Stanford University. As a graduate student, she was honored with Stanford’s highest honor for teaching, the Gore Award. Additionally, in 2006 Wright was awarded a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers.



Silvia Figueira

Silvia Figueira was awarded tenure and promoted to associate professor in the computer engineering department. Figueira is committed to engaging students in research, and has established creative collaborations with Silicon Valley companies to fund these students’ efforts. She played a key role in establishing the Summer Research Group and the Research Option, two programs that are invaluable in supporting student research.


JoAnne Holliday

JoAnne Holliday was awarded tenure and promoted to associate professor in the computer engineering department. Holliday is founder and co-director of CASPIA, the SCU Center for Advanced Study and Practice of Information Assurance. The goal of this Center is to promote research, education and good practice of information security—a critical endeavor in today’s technological world.


Shoba Kirshnan

Shoba Krishnan was awarded tenure and promoted to associate professor in the electrical engineering department. Krishnan’s research in high-speed mixed signal and analog integrated circuit design and test is enhanced by her close ties with local IC industry. She is driven to vitalize growth in this area, working closely with undergraduate and graduate students through her courses and research. Krishnan serves as faculty advisor for the student chapter of IEEE, and champions numerous outreach programs for the School of Engineering.


Samiha Mourad Samiha Mourad (electrical engineering) received a President’s Special Recognition Award for outstanding contributions to Santa Clara University in teaching, scholarship, and service. Her leadership in curriculum and research, including improvements to the graduate curriculum, were of particular note. Mourad served as associate dean for graduate studies and research from 1993-98 and has chaired the electrical engineering department since Fall 2003. In addition to her service to the School, she also maintains a vibrant research portfolio with a focus on testability of integrated circuits.