Class Notes

Class Notes

Winter 2016

OU, SECS remember Dean Howard Witt

Dean Howard Witt
Howard Witt, Ph.D., former dean, School of Engineering and Computer Sciences, and professor emeritus of Engineering, died on October 18, 2015. He was 86.

Dr. Witt joined the Oakland University faculty in 1967 in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He served the University until his retirement in 1997.

The University promoted Dr. Witt to full professor in May of 1971. Shortly thereafter, he became assistant dean in charge of undergraduate engineering programs. Dr. Witt assumed the additional responsibilities of acting dean of the School of Engineering and Computer Science in October of 1976.

On July 25, 1988, Dr. Witt was named dean.

“Howard Witt served as dean during a pivotal time in the field of Engineering,” said Louay Chamra, Ph.D., dean of the School of Engineering and Computer Science. “His dedication to SECS impacted generations of future engineers and computer scientists who would come to Oakland University.”

Bhushan Bhatt, Ph.D., professor of Mechanical Engineering, served as associate dean under Dean Witt from 1988 to 1993.

“Prior to his taking over as the dean in 1988, four deans had come and gone in as many years,” Dr. Bhatt said. “That was a time of substantial transition and affected the stability of the School.

“In 1988, the administration and the faculty called upon Howard to provide his steady hand in administering the school. This is exactly what he did,” Dr. Bhatt added.

“The School is ever-grateful for his dedicated services as associate dean, dean and professor of Engineering, for the continued progression of the school.”

During his career, Dr. Witt also served as a consultant to Westinghouse Electric and other corporations. He was a senior member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, Tau Beta Pi and the Engineering Society of Detroit.

Dr. Witt earned a doctoral degree from Cornell University, a master’s degree from Princeton University, and a baccalaureate degree from the University of Toronto.

He is survived by Aletha, his wife of 59 years; sons Stephen (Rebecca) Witt and Larry (Jean) Witt; daughter Karen (Douglas) Muniga; grandchildren Chelsea (Ryan), Daniel (Amanda), Brianna (Matthew), Rachel (David), Jonathan, Sally, Ross, Claire; and great-grandchildren Hartlynn and Jack.


Howard R. Witt, Ph.D., former dean, School of Engineering and Computer Sciences and professor emeritus of Engineering, on October 18, 2015, at age 86.