David Pershing, dean of the University of Utah's College of Engineering for the past 11 years, has been appointed to the newly created post of senior vice president for academic affairs at the U.

Beginning Aug. 1, Pershing will oversee academic programs, budget and student services.The U. Board of Trustees will act on the appointment at its meeting Monday.

"I am confident the Dr. Pershing will make an immediate and lasting impact on the academic climate at the University of Utah," said U. President J. Bernard Machen.

Pershing is a distinguished professor of chemical and fuels engineering at the U. He earned a doctorate degree from the University of Arizona and performed his undergraduate work at Purdue University.

He served as acting vice president for academic affairs between February and December 1997.

Pershing succeeds Vice President of Academic Affairs Jerilyn S. McIntyre, who will return to teaching and research in the department of communication.

Pershing said his goal is building upon the strong foundation of education and research at the U.

"A quality education experience for our students must be the No. 1 priority," he said.

"It is equally important for us to provide a supportive environment for our faculty to conduct research and scholarship. Part of my role will be to provide that environment. I don't think I have all the answers, but we have a very strong faculty and staff, and I'm looking forward to the challenges."

Pershing's salary has not yet been determined, although it will reflect the broader of the new position, Machen said.

Earlier, the U. had announced that Pershing had withdrawn his name from consideration.

"I convinced him to go ahead . . . Other colleges wanted him do it as well," Machen said.