Dennis Berkey became the fifteenth president of Worcester Polytechnic Institute on July 1, 2004. Berkey was formally inaugurated on May 20, 2005. Berkey is a recognized leader and innovator whose distinguished academic career includes 30 years of service as a faculty member, an academic department head, a dean, and a provost of a major university.
Berkey received a B.A. in mathematics from Muskingum College in 1969, an M.A. in mathematics from Miami University in 1971, and a Ph.D. in mathematics from the University of Cincinnati in 1974. He taught at Miami University for one year before joining Boston University as an assistant professor of mathematics in 1974. He chaired the Department of Mathematics from 1978 to 1983, when he joined the central administration. From 1987 to 2002, he was dean of Arts and Sciences, where his primary concerns were promoting excellence in teaching, recruiting outstanding faculty and reforming the liberal arts curriculum.
He served twice as university provost at BU, from 1987 to 1991 and 1996 to 2004, overseeing 14 schools and colleges, the Boston University Academy, the University Library System, the Divisions of Extended Education and International Programs, a variety of research centers and institutes, and the offices of Sponsored Programs and Environmental Health and Safety.
Berkey's published research is in applied mathematics, the theory of differential equations and optimal control. He is a member of the American Mathematics Society, the Mathematical Association of America and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics. He has served as a trustee of the Dibner Institute for the History of Science and Technology, Muskingum College and the Huntington Theatre. He is the author of two textbooks, both in their third editions: Calculus and Applied Calculus for Management, Social, and Life Sciences. He was honored in 1978 with Boston University's Metcalf Cup and Prize for Excellence in Teaching.
A press release dated November 7, 2005, refers to President Berkey as the CEO of WPI (in addition to president).
He also holds the rank of professor in WPI's Math Department.