Andy Bazar, former dean of the College of Engineering and Computer Science (ECS), died on January 12, 2023, of complications from colon and bladder cancers at the age of 83. With his passing, the world lost a brilliant mind, an educator of thousands of students who moonlighted as an avocado farmer, a devotee of Persian culture and history, and above all, a steadfast and loving husband and father. Andy is survived by his wife Nora and children Thomas (Tommy) and Emily.
Born in Iran of humble origins, Bazar’s keen intelligence earned him the coveted opportunity to attend the Abadan Institute of Technology, (later renamed Petroleum University of Technology), one of the top universities in Iran, which is also the seventh place in the world between ie universities in the gas industry and petroleum engineering. He subsequently earned a master’s degree from USC and a Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in industrial engineering.
Bazar’s academic experience prior to coming to CSUF included faculty positions at Wichita State University, Fresno State and Cal Poly Pomona. At Cal Poly Pomona, he was also chairman of the manufacturing and industrial engineering department. His administrative and academic experience led him to travel to Germany, Vietnam and elsewhere, where he exchanged information and gave presentations on engineering education in the United States
After stepping down as principal of Fullerton in 1996, Andy dedicated himself to teaching full-time in the mechanical engineering department until his retirement. During this time, he taught over 18 different subjects, two of which he developed and taught for the first time. Despite health problems, Andy continued his teaching and research activities. During the Covid pandemic, he dived into the details and nuances of Zoom to try and help his students get the most out of online learning. Bazar celebrated his retirement with his colleagues from the mechanical engineering department and the College of Engineering and Computer Science in May 2022.
“He invested his time and energy into ensuring that students learned more than they read. Her goal was to teach students about industry standards and real-life scenarios,” said Charlotte Sanchez, former administrative support coordinator in the mechanical engineering department. “I will miss her smile, her infectious laugh, her eyes compassionate and her kindness sincere.She was a kind soul who touched the lives of so many outside of the classroom.
Bazar has authored dozens of publications and technical reports and has provided his expertise to government and industry leaders at Rockwell International, the Indiana Commission on Higher Education, the United States Flight Test Center at Edwards Air Force Base, Xerox, and many other organizations.
But according to Bazar’s daughter Emily, he was indeed an artist at heart who loved literature and cinema. He bought and read thousands of books, which covered the walls and halls of his house.
“Two days before he died, he sent me to the bookstore at the local library, where I FaceTimed him so he could scan the shelves and pick titles. I came back with more than a dozen books and three magazines,” she said.
Bazar also had an incorrigible sweet tooth. He poured honey on everything, whether it was necessary or not. He loved to grow and dry fruit and combine it with nuts in a natural trail mix, which he proudly distributed during the holidays. Later in his life, he became a thriving chef, studying Persian cuisine, ordering saffron from Amazon and watching YouTube tutorials before trying his hand at complicated Persian dishes.
At work, she surprised her coworkers by bringing healthy bowls of salad for retirement parties or anonymously leaving envelopes of avocados, oranges and tangerines, freshly picked from her farm, in their mailboxes.
Bazar’s colleagues remember him with love and respect. “He was an extremely dedicated and effective Dean who worked tirelessly for several years to improve the College of ECS at CSUF. He liked and respected all of the faculty, staff and students of ECS, and he always had pleasant interactions with them,” said Karim Hamidian, professor of electrical engineering. “He was truly a gentleman and kind, and a very good friend of the ECS family. This is really a big loss for the college.
Nathin Mabale, a former administrative support coordinator in the mechanical engineering department, recalled that Bazar “was always so nice when he came to the office and just stopped by to see how I was doing. It was a pleasure to work with him and see him smile every time he came to visit.”
Hossein Moini, professor emeritus of mechanical engineering, remembered Bazar as “a humble and gracious individual who had an extraordinary career with a full range of achievements.” Pradeep Nair, a professor of computer engineering, identified Bazar’s death as “really a great loss for the university.” He added that “I’ve had the pleasure of working with him on multiple occasions. He was always kind and very pleasant during my interactions with him.
In lieu of flowers, the Bazar family asks friends of Andy’s to consider donating in his memory to the Patient Access Network Foundation, which helps people with cancer and other illnesses pay for medical bills, or to the Farhang Foundation, a Los Angeles-based non-profit that promotes Persian art and culture.