Skip to main content

Science, Engineering, and Technology

Dr. Nawal Benmouna
Dr. Nawal Benmouna, Acting Collegewide Dean for Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET)

Montgomery College's Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET) area consists of departments offering courses and associate degrees in physics, engineering, geosciences, computer science, cybersecurity, and network and wireless technologies disciplines.

As part of the Montgomery College mission of empowering students to change their lives, we are committed to providing quality instruction that leads to understanding and competence suitable for the emerging global economy. Most of the undergraduate courses are transferable to top tier four-year institutions. Students in these courses have numerous academic enhancement opportunities through student clubs, internships, and undergraduate research.

Trilingual (French, English, Arabic) Dr. Benmouna has served as the chair of the Engineering, Physics, and Computer Science department on the Rockville Campus since 2014. Among other accomplishments as chair, Dr. Benmouna has spearheaded efforts to build a student pipeline to the quantum computing workforce. She partnered with Montgomery County Public Schools to generate quantum concepts in the middle school curriculum, and collaborated with the University of Maryland College Park (UMD) quantum leaders to create pathways to a four-year degree for MC students. She enabled the growth and transferability of the computer science program to UMD and provided support and resources in the development of the Early College engineering program. She pioneered program advising in the SET programs, including embedding advising in gateway courses, and instituted successful DFW-rate reductions in the gateway physics course. She previously taught physics courses as a professor in the Engineering, Physics and Geosciences department on the Rockville Campus, and as associate professor in the Physical Sciences department on the Takoma Park/Silver Spring Campus.

Dr. Benmouna has been the principal investigator or co-principal investigator on a number of significant grants, including the National Science Foundation S-STEM Achieving Community College Excellence, Success, and Scholarship grant. She serves as a member of the Introductory Physics for Life Sciences Advisory Board at UMD, as an initiative co-lead for the Achieving the Dream Comprehensive Advising Group, and as a collaborator on the Muon Scattering Experiment (MUSE) through the Paul Scherrer Institute for Nuclear Physics. Since 2014, she has served as an experimental physicist and student advisor at the Paul Scherrer Institute in Switzerland, building a prototype data acquisition system for the international MUSE experiment. Based on this work, she has been published in Physical Review as recently as this year.

Dr. Benmouna earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in physics as well as her doctorate in physics from American University. Before coming to Montgomery College, she was a doctoral research assistant at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center, and a postdoctoral research scientist and visiting professor at George Washington University.

Academic Departments

Degrees and Certificates

More Programs and Courses

Grant Support

Our academic programs in the Science, Engineering, and Technology disciplines have grant support exceeding $2 million, including:

Cybersecurity Advisory Board

  • Phyllis O. Bresler - PW Communications
  • Susan Cargill - Collura - Cisco
  • Sheba Shastri - Index Group
  • Martin Rosendale - Maryland Tech Council
  • Michelle Ferrone - Maryland Tech Council
  • Sam Visner - Aerospace Corporation
  • Genny Gadwale - MITRE
  • Will Mapp - Qlarent
  • Joe Reddix - The Reddix Group
  • Chet Thaker - Telebright
  • Yum Yu Cheng - United Solutions
  • Michael Chung - Washington Software
  • Vennard Wright - Wave Welcome

Internal MC Members

  • Dr. Alla Webb, Department Chair and Professor
  • Ms. Silvia Vargas, Program Coordinator and Professor
  • Dr. Helio Zwi, Department Chair and Professor
  • Dr. Nawal Benmouna, Acting Collegewide Dean 
  • Dr. Muhammad Kehnemouyi, Interim Vice President and Provost on the Germantown Campus
  • Mr. David Vargas, Professor
  • Mr. Alusine Sesay, Cybersecurity Instructional Lab Coordinator
  • Mr. Norman Singer, Cybersecurity Lab Manager

Engineering and Computer Science Advisory Board

  • Dr. Paul C. Brand – Center for Neutron research, NIST
  • Mr. Adrian Chapman – President and Chief Operating Officer, Washington Gas
  • Dr. Lorraine Fleming – Professor, Civil and Environmental Engineering, Howard University
  • Dr. William Fourney – Associate Dean of Engineering, University of Maryland College Park
  • Ms. Mary Kraft – U.S. Director of Services, Hewlett Packard
  • Mr. Bobby Patton – CEO, Patton Electronics
  • Dr. Julia Ross – Dean of Engineering and Information Technology, UMBC
  • Mr. Daniel Sawyer – Group Leader, Dimensional Metrology Group, NIST
  • Dr. Devdas Shetty – Dean of Engineering and Applied Science, UDC
  • Dr. Joseph P. Teter – Director of Technology Transfer, Naval Surface Warfare Center
  • Dr.  Benjamin Tsai – Physical Scientist, Sensor Science Division, NIST

Internal MC Members

  • Dr. Nawal Benmouna, Acting Collegewide Dean for Science, Engineering, and Technology (SET)
  • Dr. Alla Webb, Department Chair and Professor
  • Dr. Chienann Alex Hou, Program Coordinator and Professor
  • Dr. Muhammad Kehnemouyi, Interim Vice President and Provost on the Germantown Campus
  • Dr. Max Nam, Program Coordinator and Professor
  • Dr. Helio Zwi, Acting Department Chair and Professor