Posted December 4, 2011 Atlanta, GA
School of Electrical and Computer Engineering
It is with great sadness that we share with you that our dear friend and colleague, Scott Wills, died on the morning of Friday, December 2 after a long, brave battle with melanoma.
Known for his great enthusiasm and passion for his students and love of learning, Dr. Wills joined the faculty of the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE) at the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1991. He taught in the area of computer engineering, including the introduction to computer engineering course and courses in mechanisms for computing systems, computer architecture, and embedded video surveillance.
A very popular, award-winning teacher, Dr. Wills taught almost 2,900 students in 83 classes. Most recently, in 2009, he was honored with the Georgia Tech Outstanding Innovative Use of Education Technology Award, which he received with his wife and collaborator, Linda Wills, and the School of ECE Richard M. Bass/Eta Kappa Nu Outstanding Teacher Award, which is determined by a majority vote of the ECE senior class.
Dr. Wills’ research interests were in the areas of embedded surveillance systems, portable image processing architectures, and supercomputer interconnection networks. He and Dr. Linda Wills co-led the Mobile Vision Embedded Systems (MOVES) research group. During his career, Dr. Wills graduated 23 Ph.D. students and seven master’s students and supervised over 24 undergraduate researchers. One-third of his doctoral students are in university positions and two-thirds have joined leading electronics companies, including Intel, Motorola, Qualcomm, Samsung, and Sarnoff Corporation.
A passionate advocate for engineering education, Dr. Wills was a leader in defining the new computer engineering curriculum within the School of ECE. He was also a leader in education on the Institute level, serving on the Institute Undergraduate Curriculum Committee from 1999-2005 and as its chair for two years, 2003-2005, and he served on the Institute Graduate Curriculum Committee, 2005-2007. He also served on the Joint College of Computing/College of Engineering committees that formed the Computational Science and Engineering Program and the Software Engineering certificate.
One of Dr. Wills’ students once said of him, “I don’t know of any other person who has better infused in students the passion for the subject that he or she possesses.” Dr. Wills’ personal concern for students and his unselfish efforts to creating classes with appropriate, innovative uses of modern IT have been inspirational to students and faculty alike.
Memorial Service Information
Funeral services for Scott Wills will be held on Monday, December 5 and also on Tuesday, December 6. On December 5, the service will be held at 3 p.m. at Duluth First United Methodist, 3208 Duluth Highway 120, Duluth 30096. Church information and directions are also available at http://www.duluthumc.org/ and directions http://www.duluthumc.org/home.aspx?igid=50652
On December 6, a funeral Mass will be held at 11 a.m. at the Catholic Church of Saint Monica, 1700 Buford Highway, Duluth. The family will receive guests after the Mass in the church hall. Church information and directions are also available at http://www.saintmonicas.com/ and http://www.saintmonicas.com/Parish%20Info/Directions.htm
Donations may be sent to AIM at Melanoma, 3217 Bob O Link Court, Plano, TX 75093.
The family will receive friends on Sunday December 4 from 4-7 p.m. at Bill Head Funeral Homes & Crematory, Inc at 3088 Highway 120, Duluth, GA. Directions may also be found at http://www.billheadfuneralhome.com/page6.html and click on Duluth chapel option.
Scott meant a great deal to all of us, and he, his contributions, and his presence will be missed very, very much. Please continue to show your support for his wife, Linda, and her family and keep them in your thoughts and prayers.