From the Dean: September 2019

Dear Purdue Engineering Community,

This year of 2019-20 has gotten off to an exciting start. And not just because of the ECE student and Boilermaker quarterback Elijah Sindelar’s performance at the opening home game last Saturday.

Today we celebrated the generous new support from Lilly Endowment, which has provided a $40M gift to the Gateway Complex for Engineering and Polytechnic. This allows Gateway II to be constructed at the same time as Gateway I, now named Dudley Hall. Like previous gifts from Lilly Endowment, the impact will be significant: in this case the transformation of how engineering students learn and how Purdue serves Indiana. The Gateway Complex, including Potter Hall renovation per our Space Master Plan 2017-2027, will re-envision the southeast neighborhood of campus and a continuous flow from Grissom Hall all the way to Armstrong Hall.

A week ago, we "flipped the switch" for the nation's first fully digitized nuclear reactor at Purdue, commissioned by the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Another example of being the best at the intersection between the virtual and physical sides of engineering, this substantially updated version of a long-standing Purdue asset will enable new research and teaching.

Yesterday the latest college ranking by U.S. News and World Report was released, including the one for engineering. To the degree that any particular ranking methodology is useful, we are glad to see that Purdue Engineering is again the largest top-10 engineering undergraduate program in the U.S., and that 7 of our B.S. degrees are ranked in the departmental top 10. Compared with last year, 6 degree programs received better ranking.

Later this month, the weekend of Sept 20-22 will be particularly busy, when we celebrate the 50th anniversary of Interdisciplinary Engineering. IDE has had a substantial impact on now-stand-alone degrees and continues to offer creative paths for engineering students today. Then later that weekend, the second annual Amelia Earhart Summit, organized by Women in Aerospace and Graduate Women’s Group, will feature alumna Beth Moses, the first female astronaut in the private sector.

I also hope you will mark the afternoon of Sept. 30 for a special event announcing another key development in our continued innovation of learning.

Pinnacle of Excellence at Scale takes a unique combination of places, programs and people. Thank you for what you do each and every day. Boiler up!


Mung Chiang
John A. Edwardson Dean of the College of Engineering
Purdue University