Colorado State University Names First Director of Growing Interdisciplinary Information Science & Technology Program

Colorado State University Distinguished Professor H.J. Siegel recently was named director of the university’s expanding Information Sciences and Technology Center, or ISTeC. ISTeC is a universitywide organization focused on increasing the excellence and visibility of information science and technology research, education and outreach activities at Colorado State.

"Dr. Siegel brings to ISTeC a wealth of experience and proven success in information sciences," said Anthony Frank, vice president for research and information technology. "As the Abell Distinguished Professor and with his internationally recognized expertise, Dr. Siegel brings quality leadership to this important post, and we are confident that he will help position ISTeC and Colorado State as a national leader in information science and technology education and research."

ISTeC is broadening its scope to function as a virtual college within Colorado State that unites information science and technology research, education and outreach among faculty throughout the university’s eight colleges and more than 50 departments. Driven by Siegel’s leadership and a new strategic plan, the new goals of ISTeC include:

  • positioning Colorado State as a world-class institution in information science and technology;
  • providing support needed for information science and technology educators throughout the university to work together for the benefit of students;
  • developing education programs and standards to ensure the highest levels of information science and technology competence in students; and
  • establishing long-term relationships with Colorado information science and technology-related industries.

The complete ISTeC strategic plan is available on the Web at

According to Siegel, the growth of ISTeC sends a strong signal that Colorado State recognizes the need for special attention to the rapidly moving information science and technology field and its impact on every academic unit and major in the university.

"Because societies are dependent on information and communication technologies as engines of economic and social growth, those institutions with the most rapid, effective and significant responses to the growth of information science and technology will rise to the top," said Siegel. "Through ISTeC, we are positioning Colorado State as a leader in this important area."

ISTeC was formed in January 2000 and focused initially on educational activities. ISTeC quickly established the information science and technology independent studies program, which is similar to a university minor. This program provides students from a variety of academic backgrounds with core information technology education in computer science, programming, telecommunication, digital communication technologies, technical writing and Web design. In addition, the ability for working professionals and others to participate in the program via the Internet began in fall 2002.

In December 2001, a strategic planning committee charged with determining the expanded scope, function and goals of the organization decided that ISTeC and the previously established Virtual College should be combined into a single organization and operate under the name ISTeC. The Colorado State Virtual College of Information Science and Technology had been announced in the fall of 2000 to cut across boundaries and involve all the colleges of the university in information science and technology.

The combined organization now nurtures existing programs and develops new ones that conduct information science and technology research, build bridges between the information science and technology disciplines, facilitate technology transfer between Colorado State and industry, provide career-long training for industrial information science and technology professionals, and ensure that all Colorado State graduates have an understanding of information science and technology and its potential impacts on society.

Siegel holds the endowed chair position of Abell Distinguished Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and also is a professor of computer science. From 1976-2001, Siegel served as a professor in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at Purdue. He received bachelors’ degrees in electrical engineering and management from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He earned two master’s degrees and a doctoral degree in electrical engineering and computer science from Princeton University.

Siegel is a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers and a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery. He has authored or co-authored more than 300 published technical papers on parallel and distributed computing and communications, has co-edited eight volumes and written the book, "Interconnection Networks for Large-Scale Parallel Processing." Agencies that have supported his research include the U.S. Air Force Office of Scientific Research, Army Research Office, Ballistic Missile Defense Agency, DARPA, Defense Mapping Agency, IBM, NASA and the National Science Foundation.