New CEO Cites Momentum as Key to Future Success
MELBOURNE, FLA. — T. Dwayne McCay was formally installed as the fifth president of Florida Institute of Technology on Friday, Sept. 9, championing a new era of success.
“Momentum at Florida Tech has been building for several years,” McCay said. “That momentum has carried us to be ranked one of the top 20 small universities in the world. It has aided us in attracting talented faculty and students and additional donors to even further build that momentum.
“Now we are prepared to climb even higher in the ranks of great universities, both small and large,” McCay added. “The student body is increasing in quality, expert faculty are being hired in critical areas and plans are under development for an expansion of programs and facilities to meet the demands of our modern era.”
The inauguration ceremony at the university’s Clemente Center, attended by approximately 900 faculty, staff, students and community leaders, was a unique opportunity to discuss the university’s role in technological education. Dava Newman, the deputy administrator of NASA, was on hand to offer the keynote address, representing the university’s long-standing relationship with the space program dating to its founding in 1958 as a “night school for missilemen.” Phil Farmer, chairman of the Florida Tech Board of Trustees and retired chairman, president and CEO of Harris Corp., discussed the university’s remarkable history and performed the installation on behalf of the institution.
Other universities sent representatives to take part in the ceremony and academic processional, including the University of Florida, St. Leo University, Barry University, Eckerd College and Palm Beach Atlantic University.
McCay formally took office as president and CEO of Florida Tech July 1. He had previously served the university as executive vice president and chief operating officer, responsible for all academic, research and student matters, including athletics. He came to Florida Tech July 1, 2003, from the University of Tennessee, where he was the vice president for research and information technology and served as the chief research officer and chief information officer for all units of the university.
Earlier, while a vice president at the University of Tennessee, he served as CEO of the Space Institute; professor, Engineering Science and Mechanics; adjunct professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering; program chairman, Engineering Science and Mechanics; chairman of the Center for Laser Applications; and principal investigator, NASA Spacelab Experiment and several projects on laser processing of materials.
Previously McCay was assigned to the NASA George C. Marshall Space Flight Center in Alabama. There in the Structures and Propulsion Laboratory, he was chief of the Propulsion Division; branch chief of Turbomachinery and Combustions Devices Branch and of the Propulsion Analysis Branch; and senior aerospace engineer of the Auxiliary Propulsion Branch.
McCay holds a Ph.D. from Auburn University. He and his wife, Mary Helen McCay, who holds a Ph.D. in Metallurgical Engineering and was a decorated NASA engineer early in her career, reside in Melbourne. Together, they hold 18 patents based on their materials processing research.
To see a replay of the ceremony, please visit https://floridatech.photoshelter.com/galleries/C0000eMpYHc2wf8Q/G0000gm0gO0z2FA4/VD000s_9X0WDulgo/Inauguration-Ceremony-2016-HD-1280×720-Mp4-mp4.
For video of just the installation portion of the inauguration, please visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AjlRyKBfhfo.