Dr. Brent Iverson became the second dean of the School of Undergraduate Studies in July 2013. Iverson was actively involved in the formation of the school, first serving on the Task Force on Curricular Reform that led to the school’s creation in 2006 and then on the school’s faculty governance group, the Undergraduate Studies Advisory Committee, for four years.
Growing up in Silicon Valley, the nation’s hub of innovation and entrepreneurship, Iverson saw time and time again how ideas and individuals can change the world, if given a supportive environment. Since his appointment, Iverson has worked tirelessly to show prospective Longhorns that Undergraduate Studies is the best place for students unsure of their majors. As the school continues to grow in popularity, Iverson will focus on strengthening its unique resources to ensure that each student finds his or her collegiate calling.
Before he became dean, Iverson was chairman of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, where he holds the Warren J. and Viola Mae Raymer Professorship. He has co-authored eight editions of an organic chemistry textbook used at universities across the country. He is well known across campus for teaching an immensely popular undergraduate organic chemistry course, a task he continues to perform each fall.
Iverson has received numerous awards in recognition of his contributions in the classroom. In 2013, he was elected inaugural president of the UT System Academy of Distinguished Teachers established by the Board of Regents. In 2011, he was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Other honors include being elected into the Texas Philosophical Society in 2016, the Minnie Stevens Piper Professor Award (2013), the Margaret C. Berry Award for contributions to UT student life (2012), the UT Board of Regents Outstanding Teacher Award (2011), the American Chemical Society Cope Scholar Award (2005), the Jean Holloway Teaching Award (2001), the UT Austin Academy of Distinguished Teachers (1999), and the Friars Centennial teaching award (1995). He has served on the Research Corporation for Scientific Advancement Board of Directors since 2008, and this year he joined the Camp Kesem National Board of Directors, an international charity that sends kids of cancer patients to summer camp for free.
Iverson also maintains an active research lab. Major projects include the development of technologies that will enable the creation of next-generation biotherapeutics, investigation of a new class of molecules that bind to long stretches of DNA, and creation of synthetic molecules that clarify the factors responsible for amyloid fibril formation, one of the characteristic features of Alzheimer’s disease. He is an inventor on 23 issued U.S. patents, many of which have been licensed and generate income for The University of Texas at Austin. Working with George Georgiou and Jennifer Maynard of the Department of Biomedical Engineering, Iverson helped develop an FDA-approved late-stage cure for exposure to anthrax.
Dean Iverson received his bachelor’s degree in chemistry from Stanford University in 1982 and a Ph.D. in chemistry from the California Institute of Technology in 1987. He completed his postdoctoral work at Scripps Research Institute in La Jolla, California.