Purdue University created the School of Engineering Education (ENE), the world's first such academic unit, in 2004, incorporating First-Year Engineering and Multidisciplinary Engineering/Interdisciplinary Engineering Studies and, in 2005, launching a doctoral program. Below are the milestones in the life of the School of Engineering Education in the context of Purdue's longstanding advances in educational innovation.


1953The Department of Freshman Engineering, the first program of its kind in the country, is established to prepare entering Purdue engineering students for their discipline of choice.
1958The Department of Freshman Engineering creates Purdue's first honors program, for academically advanced engineering students.
1969The nation's first Women in Engineering Program is founded in the Department of Freshman Engineering.
1969The Interdisciplinary Engineering Program is created.
1974The Minority Engineering Program is founded in the Department of Freshman Engineering.
1975The National Society of Black Engineers is founded at Purdue.
2004The School of Engineering Education is established, the first of its kind in the nation. The school brings together the First-Year Engineering Program (formerly the Department of Freshman Engineering), Multidisciplinary Engineering/Interdisciplinary Engineering Studies (formerly Interdisciplinary Engineering), and a new graduate program in engineering education.
2006-2009ENE faculty leads in ASEE's Year of Dialogue (2006-07), in the 2006 National Engineering Education Research Colloquies, in the 2008 Research in Engineering Education Symposium, and in the 2009 NSF-sponsored symposium "Creating Engineering Education Opportunities: Why and How"?, making fundamental and comprehensive contributions ot the development of the national research agenda and its advancement.
2006The first PhD is granted in the field of engineering education.
2006INSPIRE (Institute for P-12 Engineering Research and Learning) is founded in the School of Engineering Education.
2008The Ideas to Innovation Learning Laboratory opens, engaging first-year students in the engineering design process.
2009The Kamyar Haghighi Headship of Engineering Education is endowed.
2010The Dale and Suzi Gallagher Professorship in Engineering Education is endowed.
2012The Crowley Family Professorship in Engineering Education is endowed.

Heads of the Former Department of Freshman Engineering
Albert Spalding (Founding Head) 1953-1967
Clifford Gerde 1967-1973
Harold Amrine 1973-1981
Richard Grace 1981-1987
Phillip Wankat 1987-1995
Victor Goldschmidt 1996-2000
Jennifer Sinclair Curtis 2000-2003
Kamyar Haghighi 2003-2004

Heads of Interdisciplinary/Multidisciplinary Engineering
Richard Grace (Founding Head) 1969-1982
David Kessler 1982-2000
Phillip Wankat* 2000-2014
Mary Pilotte 2014-2023
Robin Adams 2023-

Heads of the School of Engineering Education
Kamyar Haghighi (Founding Head) 2004-2009
David Radcliffe (Interim Head) 2009-2010
David Radcliffe (Kamyar Haghighi Head) 2010-2016
Audeen Fentiman (Interim Head) 2016-2017
Donna Riley (Kamyar Haghighi Head) 2017-2023
Edward Berger (Interim Head) 2023-

*The Division of Interdisciplinary Engineering joined the School of Engineering Education in 2004, at which time Dr. Wankat's title changed from Head to Director of the program.