Pamela VandeVord, professor of biomedical engineering, has been named interim head of the Department of Biomedical Engineering and Mechanics (BEAM). She follows Stefan Duma, the Harry Wyatt Professor in Engineering, who will become interim director of the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science on July 1 for an anticipated two-year term.

“Pam has led groundbreaking research, and by using interdisciplinary approaches she educates students in the field of biomedical engineering,” said Don Taylor, acting dean of the College of Engineering. “Her unique approach to imparting curriculum strengthens the students' understanding of fundamental biological processes in health, injury, and disease, and reinforces the overall biomedical program."

VandeVord’s research takes a multidisciplinary approach to understand brain injuries, cell-repair strategies, and technologies that assist in prevention, identification, and treatment of nervous-system injuries. VandeVord is a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers awardee and has authored two book chapters and 67 peer-reviewed publications. Her work has led to more than $8 million in research funding from sponsors, including the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Defense, the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the U.S. Army and Navy.

As the chair for the biomedical engineering undergraduate program in BEAM, VandeVord is also jointly appointed as professor in the Virginia Tech-Wake Forest Center for Injury Biomechanics at the Virginia Tech Transportation Institute, and director of the Traumatic Nerve Technologies laboratory at the Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science.

In spring 2013, VandeVord led Virginia Tech’s inaugural undergraduate minor in biomedical engineering, which included the comprehensive program design for its ongoing curriculum development. Duma said the [department] was fortunate to have the wisdom and insight that VandeVord brought to the undergraduate program.

Before joining Virginia Tech community in 2011, VandeVord was an associate professor at Wayne State University in Detroit, Michigan. She also works as a health scientist at the Salem Veterans Administration Medical Center’s Research Service.

She earned her bachelor’s in physiology from Michigan State University and a master’s and doctoral degrees from Wayne State University.

Share this story