Rose-Margaret Ekeng-Itua, Ph.D., Special Director
Rose-Margaret Ekeng-Itua, Ph.D., professor of engineering and coordinator of the Smart Manufacturing Technology Program at Ohlone College, has more than 15 years of experience in higher education. Before moving to the U.S., she was chair of the engineering department and senior lecturer of electrical/electronic engineering at the University of West London in the U.K.
She holds a B.Eng. (Hons) in electrical/electronic engineering (specializing in telecommunications systems) from the Federal University of Technology Owerri, Nigeria; an MSc. in mobile and satellite communication engineering from the University of Surrey, U.K.; and a Ph.D. in cybernetics from the University of Reading, U.K. She also holds a certificate in disruptive strategies from Harvard Business School.
In 2018, Dr. Ekeng-Itua received SWE’s Advocating Women in Engineering Award. Among her other honors are the 2017 Outstanding Teaching Award from the American Society for Engineering Education Pacific SouthWest Section and the 2017 Faculty of the Year Award from Ohlone College. The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) and the East Bay Economic Development Alliance in California have also recognized her contributions to innovation in education.
Dr. Ekeng-Itua has been a two-time Visiting Research Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley, where she carried out research on smart sustainable manufacturing and smart microgrids, respectively. Her other research interests are cybernetics, artificial intelligence, internet of things, human computer interaction, diversity and equity in STEM, STEM education, appropriate technology for emerging economies, and the impact of technology on society.
UNESCO, BBC, and the IEEE have recognized Dr. Ekeng-Itua for her contributions toward bridging gender and racial divides in STEM education and industry. She is the FY20 president of the SWE Mt. Diablo Section and the founding lead for the Society’s African American affinity group; FY21 chair of the IEEE Special Interest Group in Humanitarian Technology for the Oakland East-Bay Section; and the FY20 director of the Silicon Valley Engineering Council.
Dr. Ekeng-Itua has produced a TED-Ed animation video series, “The Unsung Heroes/Heroines in STEM.” She is a TEDx speaker and in 2018 presented her debut TED Talk, “Unknown Unknowns,” advocating the visibility of women and African American innovators in order to create equity.