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ENE Memo: August 24, 2015

From the Head: 8/24

Taking the Long View

As this new academic year begins, we should not underestimate the lasting impact on our students of our teaching, mentoring, advising and even casual interactions. It is often the case that our efforts are only fully appreciated after a student graduates. Life and the passage of time bring deeper shades of meaning to educational experiences. In a world that emphasizes immediate results, where end of semester evaluations are assumed to measure the impact, it is worth taking a longer term perspective on what students ultimately value in our courses.  

Last week our FYE Instructional Support Team received a very thoughtful "thank you" email from a former student who is now working in the aerospace industry as a professional engineer. Michael took our two first-year engineering course sequence ENGR131/132 a few years back and subsequently worked as a peer-teacher in the same courses.  

Unsolicited, Michael took the time to share just how well ENGR131/132 had prepared him for what he now experiences everyday at work. Here is his insightful email.

I wanted to let you know how helpful ENGR131/132 has been since I have started my career at UTC Aerospace Systems. A lot of what I have been doing so far involves team dynamics, working with new people (customers), and a lot of EXCEL use. In all honesty, it was hard for me to see the point of some of the lessons being taught both as a student and a peer teacher. However, I just wanted to commend you and your team for all of your hard work in truly preparing me for life in the engineering world.

Feel free to share this with the FYE students, and let them know that if they have any sort of questions a recent alum can answer, they can feel free to contact me.

Boiler up!

This is a strong endorsement of the vision we set out to accomplish in the ENGR131/132 course sequence some seven years ago. We had to overcome considerable resistance from many quarters to launch these innovative courses that unashamedly set out to develop professional habits of mind. It is a source of continuing frustration that we are still called upon to defend these courses against a number of persistent urban myths.  

Certainly Michael's email is a single data point; yet it is hard to believe that his experience is an isolated instance. Unfortunately, no amount of data or evidence will change the views of those whose minds are made up. 

I was introduced a long time ago to an amusing pseudo Latin aphorism; Illegitimi non carborundum. I learned this empowering slogan of defiance from J.E. (Tim) Holt, my design instructor as an undergraduate and later my colleague, mentor, supporter and friend. Sadly Tim passed away this summer, but his deep insights into the paradoxical ways that the academy responds to change agents and innovation in education remain with me.

In terms of the relationship between what we teach at school and what our graduates need as practitioners, Tim contributed many ideas through the numerous papers he published during the 80s, 90s and 2000s on what a recent NSF request for proposals now calls the formation of engineers. Here is one example of Tim's thinking on preparation for practice. As some of his work was published before everything was online, you may need to walk over to the library and locate a hard copy of the original journals in the stacks. 

Returning to Michael's email, we should all draw encouragement from his observations. His words vindicate the pioneering efforts of those who have worked hard over many years to imagine, design, implement, operate and continuously improve these ground-breaking first-year courses.

Transformation in the academy is a marathon, not a sprint. It takes courage, persistence and resilience.


Calendar: 8/24


  • Aug 24: Classes commence
  • Aug 27: ENE Research Seminar ARMS 1109 3:30pm (Weekly) 
  • Aug 28: ENE Staff Meeting, 8:30-9:30, WANG 3501
  • Sept 2: ENE Faculty Meeting, 9:30-10:30am, WANG 3501
  • Sept 2: Assistant Professor meet with Head, 10:30-11:30am, WANG 3501  
  • Sept 7: Labor Day
  • Sept 9: ENE Faculty Meeting, 9:30-11:30am, WANG 3501
  • Sept 16: ENE Advance Follow-Up, 9:30-11:30am, WANG 3501
  • Sept 19: Family Day
  • Sept 30: ENE Faculty Meeting, 9:30-10:30am, WANG 3501
  • Sept 30: Associate Professors meet with Head, 10:30-11:30, WANG 3501
  • Oct 4/5: Big Ten + Grad Expo
  • Oct 12/13: Fall Break
  • Oct 16: ENE Staff Meeting, 8:30-9:30am, WANG 3501
  • Oct 28: ENE Faculty Meeting, 9:30-11:30am, WANG 3501
  • Oct 28/29: ENE Grad Program Open House
  • Nov 4: ENE Advance Follow-Up, 9:30-11:30, WANG 3501
  • Nov 7: Homecoming
  • Nov 12: ENE Interdisciplinary Engineering Colloquium, 3:30-5pm, ARMS Atrium
  • Nov 13: ENE Industrial Advisory Council, 8:00am-3pm, WANG 3501
  • Nov 18: Faculty-PhD Student Matching, 9:30-11:30, WANG 3501
  • Nov 26/27: Thanksgiving
  • Dec 2: ENE Faculty Meeting, 9:30-11:30am, WANG 3501
  • Dec 20: Commencement

Spring 2016

  • Feb 24: ENE Outstanding Alumni Awards

News and Information: 8/24

SAFETY Matters

The beginning of a new academic year is a good time to refresh yourself on several important ENE safety items.

  1. Review the ENE Office Safety Checklist and perform an office self-audit:
  2. Refresh yourself on ENE Hazard Communication & Right-To-Know (RTK) policies by viewing this short module:
  3. Visit the ENE Safety webpage ( and review the ARMS & WANG emergency procedures

If you have any other safety questions or concerns, contact Patrick La Petina or another member of the ENE Safety Committee

Professional Communication Workshops for Graduate Students

The College of Engineering is offering a variety of workshops on designed to help graduate students strengthen their written, oral, graphical, and interpersonal communication skills.

The full program can be found here. Be aware that the offerings are listed in alphabetical not chronological order - so scroll down. 

Please note that you MUST register for the workshops

Writing Lab Satellite Re-Opens Wednesday

The Engineering Satellite of Purdue's Writing Lab, located in the MSEE atrium, re-opens on Wednesday, August 26.

Consultants will be available to help you with writing from 6:00-9:00 pm by Beans Coffee Shop. Beans will remain open until 7:00 for anyone wanting an evening snack.

SAIL Program Announcement 

International Programs will once again offer the Study Abroad for International Learning (SAIL) Grant Program.  These funds will provide awards to faculty members/staff through their academic units for the development and/or support of departmental (“short-term”) study abroad programs. 

Successful SAIL program proposals are eligible for awards of up to $7,000 and will require a $1,000 match from GEP and $1000 match from your School.  These funds will be used as a program subsidy and lower to costs to students. 

In addition, awards for up to $3,000 (with a flat $1,000 College or departmental match) will be available to develop new strategic faculty-led programs and/or to train new faculty members to lead existing programs.

Proposals should be submitted as a single .pdf file consisting of

  • A one-page description of the program being proposed and where it fits in the curriculum, along with the names of the faculty/staff involved
  • A proposed budget of program costs (Jill Churchill in GEP will assist with this)
  • A proposed itinerary
  • A letter of support from your Unit  head
  • Completed 2016 SAIL Proposal Summary form (attached)

Please submit your proposals to by September 14, 2015.  After review in GEP, they will be sent to Dave Ayers who will announce the recipients during the first week in October.  Proposals should include:

Questions regarding Engineering SAIL Proposals should be directed to Jill Churchill at or call 765-494-1069

Kudos: 8/24 Candee Krautkramer on being inducted into the Co-Op Education Hall of Fame at Purdue. Candee is long serving member of the ENE Industrial Advisory Council. She is a Research Technical Leader at Kimberly-Clark Corporation and a 1990 grad of ChE at Purdue. The award will be made on Sept 16 at a luncheon on campus. 

Funding Opportunities: 8/24

Selected Funding Opportunities:

NSF Integrated Earth Systems (IES) IES is a program in the Division of Earth Sciences (EAR) that focuses on the continental, terrestrial and deep Earth subsystems of the whole Earth system. The overall goal of the program is to provide opportunity for collaborative, multidisciplinary research into the operation, dynamics and complexity of Earth systems at a budgetary scale between that of a typical project in the EAR Division's disciplinary programs and larger scale initiatives at the Directorate or Foundation level. Deadline: November 16

NSF Computational Mathematics This program supports mathematical research in areas of science where computation plays a central and essential role, emphasizing analysis, development and implementation of numerical methods and algorithms, and symbolic methods. Deadline: December 1

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: FY16 Innovations at the Nexus of Food, Energy and Water Systems (INFEWS) Funding Opportunity on Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Water Through this Dear Colleague Letter, issued by the Division of Chemistry (CHE) in the Directorate for Mathematical & Physical Sciences and the Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems (CBET) in the Directorate for Engineering, the NSF aims to specifically focus on advancing knowledge of the nitrogen and phosphorus cycles; the production and use of fertilizers for food production; and the detection, separation, and reclamation/recycling of nitrogen- and phosphorus-containing species in and from complex aqueous environments. Proposals in response to this investment area should be submitted to the existing program of interest in the CHE and CBET within the existing submission windows of the programs.

DOT Center for Environmental Excellence (CEE) The purpose of the CEE will be to provide a wide range of products and services to assist agencies in achieving environmental excellence in delivering their transportation programs and projects. Through its information‐sharing, technical assistance, partnership‐building and training resources, the purpose of the CEE is to directly engage FHWA stakeholders such as State Departments of Transportation, Metropolitan Planning Organizations, local planning organizations, other Federal and state surface transportation agencies to incorporate environmental compliance, and stewardship into transportation planning, project development, construction, maintenance, and operations. Deadline: October 15

Limited Submissions:

Preproposals and rankings to the EVPRP should be e-mailed to Purdue’s open limited submission competitions, limited submission policy, and templates for preproposals may be found at For any case in which the number of preproposals received is no more than the number of proposals allowed by the sponsor, the EVPRP will notify the PI(s) that an internal competition will be unnecessary.

Limited Submission: Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics The Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics is a career development award to enable junior faculty members to carry out innovative bioethics research. The Greenwall Faculty Scholars Program in Bioethics supports research that goes beyond current work in bioethics to help resolve pressing ethical issues in clinical care, biomedical research, and public policy. Applicants must be junior faculty members holding at least a 60% appointment in a tenure series in the U.S. Priority will be given to applicants who have not yet been considered for tenure, who have not received a comparable career development award, and whose work will have an impact on public policy, biomedical research, or clinical practice. Only two applicants from Purdue will be considered.

  • Internal deadline: Contact by Monday, August 31.
  • Sponsor deadline: Letters of Intent due October 9; Invited applications due January 11.


NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Special Guidelines for Submitting Proposals: NSF and US-Israel Binational Science Foundation (BSF) Opportunity for Collaborations in Materials Research

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Special Guidelines for Submitting Collaborative Proposals under the US NSF/BIO/IOS – US-Israel BSF International Collaborative Research Opportunity

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As always, we appreciate your sharing this information with your faculty. Please contact Sue Grimes (, Kristyn Jewell (, or Perry Kirkham ( with any questions.

To suggest content for future issues of ENE Memo, contact Teresa Morris or David Radcliffe by midday Friday for the following week's issue.