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Press Release

Contact:
Anne Watzman
412-268-3830


For immediate release:
September 18, 2003

SCS Dean James Morris to Step Down in 2004

After four very productive years, Jim Morris tells me he has decided to step down at the end of his five-year term as dean of the School of Computer Science. He will return to teaching, research and some special projects at the end of the school year in 2004.

Under Jim's leadership, SCS has risen to new heights of excellence in teaching, research and recognition, During Jim's tenure as dean, SCS has been ranked first as a computer science school. Its research revenues have increased 50 percent during the last four years and the school's budget now tops $100 million.

SCS has broadened the scope of its undergraduate program, continuing to make it more attractive to women and giving all students more options outside of the basic computer science curriculum. The quality of life for students is high, with 30 percent female enrollment in the undergraduate program and 98 percent first-year undergraduate retention for all students.

In addition to his achievements within SCS, Jim's progressive thinking has had a major impact on the entire university. He headed the original initiative to establish our branch campus on the West Coast, enabling Carnegie Mellon to become a player in the Silicon Valley and giving our students and the university new opportunities for study, internships, and interaction with key people and companies in that exciting part of the country.

Jim's record of outstanding service to Carnegie Mellon extends back to the 1980s, when he became the first director of the Information Technology Center (ITC), a joint venture with IBM that conceived and engineered the university's original łAndrew˛ project. In the early 1990s, he founded and became the first director of SCS' outstanding Human-Computer Interaction Institute.

Jim has been a professor of computer science at Carnegie Mellon since 1982. He served as head of the ITC from 1983-88. He took a leave of absence from the university in 1990 to found and serve as the first president of MAYA Design Group, a consulting firm specializing in product design.

A native of Pittsburgh, he received a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Carnegie Institute of Technology in 1963. He earned master's and doctor's degrees in management and computer science, respectively, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 1963-68. For the next five years, he worked as an assistant professor at the University of California at Berkeley, where he developed several important underlying principles of programming languages. In 1974, he joined the research staff at the Xerox Palo Alto Research Center in California. During his eight years at Xerox PARC, he worked on the first distributed personal computer system and was a co-discoverer of a fast method for locating a phrase inside a large body of text. He also managed the Cedar Programming Environment project, one of the early software production environments. He returned to Carnegie Mellon in 1982 as a visiting fellow of Xerox and was recruited to direct the Andrew research project.

On November 10 Jim will serve as master of ceremonies at the induction of the first group of robots and their inventors into the newly established Robot Hall of Fame™ a joint venture of Carnegie Mellon and the Carnegie Science Center. The Robot Hall of Fame is a concept he conceived. We look forward to more exciting ideas and initiatives as Jim continues his career at Carnegie Mellon.

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