Recognizing Dr. Wu for Serving 6 Years as Department Head

The Engineering School of Sustainable Infrastructure & Environment (ESSIE) and the Department of Environmental Engineering Sciences recognizes Chang-Yu Wu, Ph.D., for six years of his tireless leadership as Department Head as his tenure came to an end in December.

Dr. Wu continues to serve as a professor within the Department of Environmental Engineering Sciences.

“I am very lucky to have fantastic faculty and staff who are super supportive. It’s great working with them to build a top and caring program in the world,” Dr. Wu said.

Throughout his tenure, Dr. Wu developed a novel early detection air sampler that efficiently collected influenza virus, solicited undergraduate teaching scholars, initiated a core-course undergraduate curriculum, and facilitated a new program within the department – Engineering Education.

“Serving the department in this role is one of the best things I have ever done, which is way more than I ever imagined,” Dr. Wu said. “I cherish every moment with our talented students, and I am so happy to see them taking off to better the world. Also, I have learned so much from my time with the ESSIE leadership team.”

After serving his term as Department Head, Dr. Wu went on a sabbatical to ​conduct experiments at Aerosol Dynamics Inc. in Berkeley, Calif., and Helmholtz Zentrum München in Munich, Germany, to upgrade an air-liquid interface exposure system and evaluate the toxicity of zinc oxide nanoparticles using the upgraded system. His sabbatical was abruptly halted due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but he has since been busy investigating how the novel virus spreads and identifying mitigation strategies to better protect healthcare workers.

“Dr. Wu’s total dedication to supporting the EES faculty, staff and students was on display every week for six years when we met to discuss how to advance the goals of ESSIE, the departments, and the individual faculty,” said Kirk Hatfield, Ph.D., ESSIE director. “He oversaw a major transformation and revival the department’s education and research through curriculum modernization and superb faculty hires. His excellent service is greatly appreciated and we look forward to his assistance in transitioning the Department Head to Dr. Annable.”

The school is thankful to Dr. Wu for setting the stage for the Department of Environmental Engineering Sciences’ bright future.