Professor of industrial engineering, recipient of the Distinguished Engineering Educator award

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University relations

Greg Parnell

Greg Parnell, Professor of Practice and Director of Master of Science in Operations Management program and Master of Science in Engineering Management programs, is the recipient of the Joint ASEE SED / INCOSE 2021 Award for Outstanding Systems Engineering Educator.

According to International Council on Systems Education, the award “recognizes an individual who provides / has made outstanding contributions in the field of systems engineering education and / or systems engineering education”.

Ed Pohl, Head of the Industrial Engineering Department, said: “With over 30 years of contributions and leadership in systems engineering education, it seems entirely appropriate that Dr Parnell is recognized as the inaugural recipient of the award. ASEE SED / INCOSE System Engineering Educator Award. Greg’s distinguished career in systems engineering education more than qualified him for the award. “

Prior to joining the U of A, Parnell was Professor of Systems Engineering at the United States Military Academy (West Point) from 1999 to 2013. Upon retirement from West Point, he was appointed Professor Emeritus. Notably, Parnell has also served on faculty at the U of A, the US Air Force Academy, Virginia Commonwealth University, and the Air Force Institute of Technology.

Parnell is the editor of the manual, Decision making for engineering and systems management, which facilitated the development of the systems engineering program at West Point. This text is now in its second edition. He is also editor-in-chief of Compromise analysis: creation and evaluation of commercial space. Additionally, Parnell was instrumental in integrating business intelligence into systems engineering. He is the main author of the Decision Management section of the current INCOSE Systems Engineering Manual., A Guide to Systems Lifecycle Processes and Activities, and the current Systems Engineering Body of Knowledge Guide (SEBoK). He is currently the lead author of the update of the Decision Management and Systems Analysis sections of the INCOSE Systems Engineering Manual.

At the U of A, Parnell has taught systems engineering and management at INEG 4433, a compulsory course for students of the Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering, seven times during the period 2013-2019. Course enrollment averages around 65 undergraduates and 5 graduate students. The course is incredibly well received by BSIE students. During exit interviews with seniors, they often state that they would have liked to have taken the course before their most recent internship experience. Additionally, the faculty coordinator of the BSIE Synthesis Experience indicated that the techniques taught in INEG 4433 are invaluable to synthesis teams as they navigate their senior projects.

Parnell has developed and co-taught five systems engineering courses for a large financial company. In doing so, he helped tailor their systems engineering program to meet their unique needs. For the U of A, Parnell developed the online Master of Science in Engineering Management program which began in fall 2017. This program already has 20 graduates and currently has over 70 students. The Master of Engineering Management program integrates Systems Engineering into the introductory course and includes another course on Systems Thinking and Systems Engineering. Parnell leads this program and the Master of Science in Operations Management program at the U of A.

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