Fall 2012

Interdisciplinary Engineering Colloquium: Where Did I Leave My Chariot? The Curious History of Parking from Ancient Rome to Tomorrow's Megacities

On November 1, ENE welcomed alumni, students, faculty, and other guests to its second annual Interdisciplinary Engineering Colloquium, titled "Where Did I Leave My Chariot? The Curious History of Parking from Ancient Rome to Tomorrow's Megacities: A Sociotechnical Exploration of a Pervasive Cultural Artifact." [Video]

colloquium invitationThe event featured IDE alumna Mary Smith, Senior Vice President and Director of Parking Consulting, Walker Parking Consultants, and John Collier, Director of Campus Master Planning, Purdue University, in a wide-ranging discussion that touched on parking globally and at the local level. The panelists explored trends in parking design around the world, how the automobile and accompanying need for parking has changed Purdue’s physical environment over the years, and how new transportation systems and societal expectations will shape the future.

Ohland, Smith, and Collier

  • Presentation by Mary Smith, Senior Vice President and Director of Parking Consulting, Walker Parking Consultants: video timestamp = 0:16:10
  • Presentation by John Collier, Director of Campus Master Planning, Purdue University: video timestamp = 0:41:07
  • Q&A: video timestamp = 1:07:34

The colloquium, inspired by ENE's boundary-crossing Interdisciplinary Engineering program, will continue in future years to present a topical subject and invite perspectives from engineering and a range of other fields, including the humanities, the social sciences, and education.

Engineering Noel Coward: How Two Multidisciplinary Engineering Students Brought the Paranormal to Life in Purdue Theatre's Blithe Spirit

This video (5:17) explores the engineering behind the art of a classic 20th-century theatrical comedy produced at Purdue in Spring 2012.

Blithe Spirit playbillFlying books and tchotchkes, banging doors, falling plates, a moving seance table--not to mention ghostly sound effect--materialized every night of the play's two-week run, thanks to MDE students Ian Boze (theater engineering) and Andrew Doerr (acoustical engineering).

Purdue Engineering's Strategic Growth Initiative and Faculty Hiring in the School of Engineering Education

This semester, Purdue's College of Engineering announced its new Strategic Growth Initiative, which will add up to 107 faculty members over the next five years--a 30 percent increase. At least three of those new openings will be for assistant or associate professors in the School of Engineering Education.

The news follows ENE's announcement this year of the Crowley Family Professorship in Engineering Education and, last year, of the Dale and Suzi Gallather Professorship in Engineering Education. With five faculty positions open across the spectrum of junior to senior faculty, ENE has the opportunity to reinforce and expand its academic and research strengths in the growing engineering education discipline.

Prospective applicants may contact Dr. David Radcliffe, Kamyar Haghighi Head of the School of Engineering Education, for more information.

ENE External Review: A Summary

This year ENE underwent an external review, as required by the College of Engineering for the various engineering schools at five-year intervals. Reviewers met with faculty, staff, and students on-site to assess ENE's strengths, opportunities, and areas for improvement.

 Among the strengths cited in the reviewers' report:

  • "Given that it is the first entity of its kind, [ENE] is the first among peers and is recognized to be a leading department for Engineering Education Research at the graduate level."
  • "The graduate program is one of the strongest of its kind in the world."
  • "ENE has created an engineering education doctoral program from scratch and with no pre-existing model to follow. The quality and impact of their efforts in the engineering education community have been very positive."
  • "ENE’s first-year engineering program is top-notch and a clear national leader. The First-Year Engineering program has been transformed through the world-class i2i Learning Laboratory and corresponding curriculum."
  • "The Interdisciplinary Engineering Program serves as an incubator of engineering program in emerging fields."
  • "The IDE/MDE programs represent another opportunity for ENE to develop unique degree programs to attract a wide range of talented and diverse students. This program aligns well with interest by students in solving global, societal problems that do not fit well within the traditional engineering school structure that require a multi-disciplinary approach. Based on peer institutions that have similar flexible engineering degrees programs as well as the IDE’s history as a program incubator for emerging fields, there is an opportunity for ENE to take advantage of its existing IDE/MDE degree."

Areas for improvement include the need for more faculty (to increase the number of senior faculty, increase mentoring possibilities, and reduce teaching loads), more advising staff, and more office and conference space.

"We're grateful to our external reviewers for the care and thoroughness with which they undertook this job," says David Radcliffe, the Kamyar Haghighi Head of Engineering Education. "Given that we now have five open faculty positions, we're optimistic that we can begin to increase our faculty size and work to address some of the needs cited. We also appreciate the vote of confidence in the School."

2012 Outstanding Alumni

Leslie Bottorff and Rick Kosdrosky, two graduates of Interdisciplinary Engineering (now part of ENE), received the school's Outstanding Alumni Award on February 22, 2012. Read about their accomplishments here.

Bottorff and Kosdrosky Left: Leslie Bottorff; Dr. David Radcliffe, Kamyar Haghighi Head of the School of Engineering Education; and Rick Kosdrosky

Rick Zadoks Receives Engineering Alumni Loyalty Award

Chair of ENE's Industrial Advisory Council, Zadoks was presented the award on Homecoming in recognition of extraordinary loyalty to Purdue's College of Engineering.

Rick Zadoks and Dean Leah Jamieson Left: Rick Zadoks and Dean Leah Jamieson

Honors and Recognitions

Spotlighting faculty who've received external recognition.

Dr. Robin Adams: Received the 2012 College of Engineering Leadership Award.

Dr. Monica Cardella:  Elected Secretary-Treasurer of ASEE's K-12 & Precollege Division.

Dr. Monica Cox:  Named inaugural Director of the College of Engineering Leadership Minor.

Dr. Brent Jesiek: Received NSF's Faculty Early Career Development Award. His research project: "Becoming Boundary Spanners: Investigating, Enhancing, and Assessing the Experiences of Early Career Engineers." This honors brings ENE's total of Career Award recipients to eight.

Dr. Bill Oakes: Received 2012 ASEE Carlson Award for innovation in engineering education. He also received the 2012 Indiana Campus Compact Award for Outstanding Contribution to the Scholarship of Engagement.

Dr. Matt Ohland: Named an ASEE Fellow. He also received, with Russell Long, the Journal of Engineering Education's best paper award for 2011.

Dr. Alice Pawley: Received the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE) in 2012, one of 96 researchers honored with the award at the White House in a ceremony on July 31.

Dr. Senay Purzer: Received the 2011 Helen Plants Award for Best Special Session at the Frontiers in Education Conference. She was also elected a director of ASEE's Educational Research and Methods Division.

Dr. Karl Smith and co-authors: Saw the publication of the consensus study Discipline-Based Education Research: Understanding and Improving Learning in Undergraduate Science and Engineering. Dr. Smith was one of two experts invited to represent engineering in an initiative that also encompasses physics, biology, the geosciences, chemistry, and astronomy.

ENEws is produced by the School of Engineering Education for the Purdue Engineering Education community. To view the e-letter in its entirety, click here. Questions or comments? Contact Lisa Tally, editor.

For more information about ENE, contact us at:

School of Engineering Education
Purdue University
Neil Armstrong Hall of Engineering, Room 1300
701 W. Stadium Ave.