Larry Finkel­stein, who has served as dean of North­eastern University’s Col­lege of Com­puter and Infor­ma­tion Sci­ence for the last 18 years, will step down from his posi­tion before the start of the next aca­d­emic year.

Serving as dean of our col­lege has been the high­light of my aca­d­emic career,” Finkel­stein said. “By every objec­tive mea­sure, the col­lege is in the strongest posi­tion it has ever been and is primed to take the next giant step for­ward. These accom­plish­ments are due to the efforts of our tal­ented fac­ulty, staff and stu­dents who are ded­i­cated to the con­tin­uing suc­cess of the col­lege. During this final year, I will work hard to see that our ambi­tious new ini­tia­tives are firmly established.”

Stephen W. Director, provost and senior vice pres­i­dent for aca­d­emic affairs, announced the news to the North­eastern com­mu­nity on Wednesday.

Larry’s work over the years has made a tremen­dous impact on CCIS and advanced the university’s teaching and research mis­sion in crit­ical areas, such as improving the quality of health care through inno­v­a­tive infor­ma­tion tech­nology and securing the nation’s cyber­in­fra­struc­ture,” Director said.

Finkel­stein joined the North­eastern fac­ulty in 1983, just one year after the Col­lege of Com­puter and Infor­ma­tion Sci­ence was founded. During his tenure, CCIS was awarded two National Cen­ters of Aca­d­emic Excellence—one from the National Secu­rity Agency for a center in Cyber Oper­a­tions and the other from both the NSA and the Depart­ment of Home­land Secu­rity for a center in Infor­ma­tion Assur­ance Research & Edu­ca­tion. During the last three years, research funding has increased by 180 percent.

In addi­tion to pio­neering com­bined majors at North­eastern, CCIS has also launched sev­eral ground­breaking and inter­dis­ci­pli­nary pro­grams at the under­grad­uate, grad­uate and doc­torate levels. These pro­grams include bachelor’s degrees in com­puter sci­ence with a con­cen­tra­tion in cyber­op­er­a­tions and master’s and doc­torate degrees in health infor­matics and infor­ma­tion assurance.

Under Finkelstein’s lead­er­ship, the quality of stu­dents enrolled in CCIS has increased sig­nif­i­cantly and the col­lege has expanded expe­ri­en­tial edu­ca­tion oppor­tu­ni­ties for under­grad­u­ates and grad­uate stu­dents, including adding numerous posi­tions at For­tune 500 companies.

Finkel­stein also helped lead the devel­op­ment of online options for pro­fes­sional master’s stu­dents, including making all of these pro­grams avail­able at Northeastern’s grad­uate cam­puses in Char­lotte, N.C., and Seattle, Wash.

As dean, Finkel­stein strength­ened the college’s teaching and research enter­prise in the core dis­ci­plines of com­puting and pur­sued new fields such as net­work sci­ence, com­pu­ta­tional social sci­ence and “big data.”  He has hired out­standing fac­ulty throughout his tenure who have advanced this expanded view of com­puting and sig­nif­i­cantly ele­vated the external rep­u­ta­tion of the college.

After taking a one-​​year sab­bat­ical, Finkel­stein plans on returning to the fac­ulty to teach and oversee a research program.

In the coming months, the uni­ver­sity will con­duct a national search for a new dean.