BioB.S.E. cum laude, Mechanical Engineering & Materials Science, Duke University, 1990M.S. Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of Virginia, 1992Ph.D. Materials Science and Engineering, University of Virginia, 1998
"My focus is upon undergraduate education, teaching students at the intersection of sustainability leadership, design, and value(s). I am particularly passionate about raising student understanding of the close coupling between global warming and the engineered energy systems that power global society."James F. Groves, Associate Professor
James Groves has scholarly interests in the intersection of engineering education and materials science. While working on his Ph.D., he co-invented directed vapor deposition technology and subsequently co-founded Directed Vapor Technologies International. In the area of materials science his greatest interest lies in the use of materials for sustainable energy solutions.
For more than a decade, Dr. Groves administered distance learning in UVA’s engineering school, serving two years as Associate Dean for Online Innovation. Those administrative efforts have translated into broad university adoption of a set of technology solutions that he initially conceived of and designed. They have also allowed the engineering school to now place among the top 15 in multiple rankings of online graduate engineering programs.
Dr. Groves was founder of Engineers PRODUCED in Virginia, an initiative which explored the use of state-of-the-art online communication and collaboration solutions for the delivery of undergraduate education to underserved communities. The PRODUCED program demonstrated a strong ability to attract non-traditional, first generation, and low and moderate income students. The program also demonstrated how engineering corporations and higher education could work together for collaborative preparation of students for the workforce without the need for student loan debt, educating and ultimately employing students in their home communities.
Dr. Groves now focuses his efforts upon undergraduate education in the multidisciplinary area of sustainability leadership, design, and value(s). Working with collaborators, he has developed a simple, structured framework for design thinking and project management. He teaches students how that framework can be used to guide not only the design of engineering products but also the management of a broader array of professional projects. He helps students to consider how alignment of their personal values with their project and design activities can increase their opportunity to make a positive impact upon the world. Finally, he teaches extensively in the arena of sustainable energy systems, attempting to help society avoid the worst impacts of global warming.