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OUS hires Mohanty to head computer science program

Accepting the position as the director of Ohio University Southern's

computer science technology program feels like a homecoming for Pradeep Mohanty.

Mohanty, 49, was hired late last month to take over the one-year-old program. He gave up his position with the telecommunications software company BayPackets in Freemont, Calif.

After living in the Silicon Valley, Mohanty said he is excited about returning to Ohio.

"I like the community. I lived in Columbus for 12 years in the past, so Ohio is not new to me," he said. "It is kind of like coming back home from California."

Mohanty received a master's degree in computer science from North Dakota State University and attended graduate school at Columbia University in New York.

He taught at the University of St. Thomas-St. Paul, Minn., from 1985 to 1987. Mohanty has worked for more than 20 years at leading technology companies including AT&T and Lucent Technologies.

OUS conducted a national search and narrowed a pool of 35 applicants down to four candidates that visited the campus, said Dr. Dan Evans, dean of OUS.

Mohanty's work expertise in the rapidly changing industry was one of the reasons why he was perfect for this job, Evans said.

"He brings a wealth of experience in the private sector and industry that drives the field of computers," Evans said. "Fortunately, he also has experience at the university level and it was his first love."

A native of India but a U.S. resident for the past 20 years and U.S. citizen, Mohanty will use this background to help advance the program.

"My job is to take this program to the next level," he said. "In information technology, the current technology is advancing rapidly. We want to take the curriculum to the next level and make the students productive from day one."

His top priorities will include working with local business and industry to see what their needs are to prepare students to jump right in, he said.

"Today's computer industry in the United States is a $390 billion industry. This industry has touched all our lives," he said. "I see a lot of exciting opportunities for the students."

Mohanty will be joined in the Ironton area by his wife Sujata, They have a daughter Amulekha, 24, who is a graduate student at Kent State University.