In one of its final acts before going on recess last week, the U.S. Senate confirmed Subra Suresh to lead the National Science Foundation, a federal agency with an annual budget of about $7 billion that focuses in part on promoting K-12 science education and research.
Suresh, 54, most recently served as the dean of the engineering school at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and was also a professor of materials science and engineering there. He replaces Arden Bement, who stepped down June 1, and has been approved for a six-year term. President Obama nominated Suresh for the job in June.
A press release from the NSF says of Suresh: "A mechanical engineer who later became interested in materials science and biology, Suresh has done pioneering work studying the biomechanics of blood cells under the influence of diseases such as malaria."
"We seek your help in identifying candidates with the following qualifications: outstanding leadership; a deep sense of scholarship; a grasp of the issues facing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics research and education; and the ability to serve effectively as a key member of the NSF management team."
The education directorate oversees four NSF divisions and administer an $872 million budget. The deadline for submitting recommendations for the assistant director post is tomorrow, Oct. 8, so if you've got one, you better hurry.