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Published: Saturday, 11/17/2012

Ahmad M. Farhoud, 1963-2012: Engineering professor honored for teaching

BY MARK ZABORNEY
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Ahmad M. Farhoud, a graduate of the University of Toledo’s electrical engineering program from bachelor’s through doctoral degrees who became a faculty member honored for his teaching, died Thursday in Toledo Hospital. He was 49.

He had non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He was undergraduate program director of electrical engineering technology and continued to meet with students, although in his South Toledo home, during his illness.

“He fought hard until the end,” his daughter, Julianna, said. “He was always so personable and outgoing. He just loved helping students.”

Mr. Farhoud, an associate professor, published papers about electrical control systems and served on college of engineering and UT committees, said Allen Rioux, chairman of the department of engineering technology.

“His best quality was his passion for teaching and his dedication to the students,” Mr. Rioux said

Mr. Farhoud did not hurry students through difficult material. “He was going to make sure everybody understood,” said Scott Buchanan, a student from 1998 to 2001.

Mr. Farhoud's wife, Susan, added: “He had no patience with somebody who was just phoning it in, who wasn’t willing to apply themselves.”

In 2004, he received the college of engineering’s outstanding teacher award for his classroom teaching, undergraduate student advising, laboratory instruction, and senior project advising.

He was born May 29, 1963, and grew up in the Ain el-Hilweh Palestinian refugee camp near Sidon, Lebanon. At his mother’s urging, after high school Mr. Farhoud followed his brother Tahsin’s lead out of the camp and to Toledo.

He received his bachelor of electrical engineering degree from UT in 1985, and assistantships allowed him to pursue graduate studies at UT. Mr. Farhoud later became a U.S. citizen.

As a UT graduate, he could help his students navigate the system, Mr. Rioux said. He also was sensitive to the difficulties international students face and “tried to befriend them and teach them,” Mr. Rioux said.

He was a member of the Islamic Center of Greater Toledo in Perrysburg Township.

Surviving are his wife, Susan, whom he married Dec. 31, 1987; sons, Mohammed and Joseph; daughter, Julianna; mother, Jawhara; brothers, Tahsin and Mahmoud, and sisters, Sana, Raja, and Safa.

Services will be at 1:30 p.m. today in the Witzler-Shank Funeral Home, Perrysburg, where visitation will be at 12:30 p.m.

Contact Mark Zaborney at: mzaborney@theblade.com or 419-724-6182.



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