Rice University Engineering Management & Leadership Faculty
MEML@Rice program participants will benefit not only from the curriculum and flexible class schedules but also from the esteemed faculty members who bring real-life skills, leadership, innovative thinking, and project management experience to the educational program. Engineering management faculty help to ensure that program participants are prepared to succeed outside of the classroom and engage in a rewarding future as an engineering leader in the emerging technology era known as Industry 4.0.
Meet Our Faculty
Drawn from Rice's George R. Brown School of Engineering and the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership, our engineering management faculty have demonstrated track records of technical leadership, engineering project management, and research expertise in many relevant engineering areas. At the same time, they also possess the technical and problem-solving skills and inventive spirit that is the hallmark of great engineers.
Our award-winning faculty have served in leadership roles working for Fortune 500 companies and the U.S. Armed Forces. They bring unique leadership experience and a desire to share their understanding of engineering management with their students.
Uyiosa Abusomwan, Ph.D., Lecturer
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Engineering Product Management in Industry 4.0
Dr. Uyiosa Abusomwan is an experienced leader in the development and deployment of cutting edge digital design & engineering strategies. He has held multiple roles in new technology development, reliability management, and technical support at large organizations, and is product digitalization architect for a leading technology provider in the energy industry.
Edgar Avalos-Gauna, Ph.D., Lecturer
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Applied Statistics and Data Science for Engineering Leaders
Dr. Edgar Avalos-Gauna has a diverse background including academic and industry experience. He has worked industry-side for Procter & Gamble and Bridgestone & Firestone, both in Mexico. Then he pursued a career in academia as a full time Lecturer. He has over 10 years of experience teaching several engineering courses, including a 2-year position as teaching assistant at University of Liverpool. At his most recent position, he was appointed as head of the Data Science department at Universidad Panamericana and has also been part of different collaborative projects with the data science department and other institutions and faculties.
Steve Gomez, Ed.D., Professor in the Practice
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Engineering Management & Leadership Theory & Application
Steve Gomez has experience developing STEM expert leaders in industry and K-16 academic settings. He has more than twenty years of experience in the Energy industry working as an engineer, project manager, program manager, function manager, and executive team member. He also recently joined the Collaborative for Children's Board focused on developing our youngest emerging leaders.
Josh Gray, Ph.D., Professor in the Practice
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Engineering Economics for Engineering Managers
Dr. JL Gray is the President & Principal Consultant of Lukman Consulting Group. He has over two decades of consulting experience in the Biotechnology, Defense, Education, Energy, Healthcare, Insurance, and Transportation industries, working in private industry and government institutions. As the National Society of Black Engineers Houston Professionals Chapter President, he is committed to elevating diversity, equity, and inclusion in STEM.
Sergio Kapusta, M.B.A., Ph.D, Professor in the Practice
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Ethical-Technical Leadership
A former Chief Scientist of Royal Dutch Shell, Dr. Sergio Kapusta has extensive academic and industry experience. He worked for over 30 years in all sectors of the Oil and Gas industry, including research, engineering, operations, planning and strategy, both in the US and internationally. He is a fellow of NACE, the corrosion society, and has spoken at numerous international technology and science conferences (e.g., SPE, NACE and The Electrochemical Society).
John Via, D.Eng., Professor in the Practice
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Capstone Project
Dr. John Via has a diverse background of industrial and academic experience. He worked in the chemical, medical device, and pharmaceutical industries for 30+ years and was a GM/VP and Vice President Manufacturing at Alcon. He taught for over 20 years at TCU, SMU and Drexel where he served as Associate Dean of Engineering, Department Head - Engineering Management, and Program Director.
Claudia Zettner, Ph.D, Professor in the Practice
Master of Engineering Management & Leadership Course: Engineering-Related Project Management
Dr. Claudia Zettner has nearly 20 years of experience with ExxonMobil in a variety of key advisor roles across the Upstream including Research, Production, Drilling, Unconventionals, and Projects. She is also a member of the Society of Petroleum Engineer's Business Management and Leadership Committee.