Dr. Jim Rankin returned to his alma mater in January as the 19th president of South Dakota School of Mines & Technology. A South Dakota native from Draper and Fort Pierre, Jim graduated from Mines in 1978 with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering.
In a conversation with Matt Ehlman of The Numad Group, we'll get to know more about Jim, and his vision for Mines and our community.
Prior to returning to Mines, his leadership as vice-provost for research and economic development at the University of Arkansas generated more than 50 start-up companies and significantly increased annual external funding to $103 million. He led efforts to develop the institution’s first strategic plan in research and economic development, instituted several faculty recognition programs, and developed an expedited industry contracting process.
Previously at Ohio University, Jim was interim vice president for research, associate dean, professor of electrical engineering, and director of the Avionics Engineering Center. He has also been a professor at St. Cloud State University and an engineer at Rockwell-Collins. Rankin’s personal research has been funded by numerous NASA and FAA grants. His PhD and master’s degrees in electrical engineering were earned at Iowa State University.