Welcome to the fall 2017 issue of NC State Engineering magazine. Each fall, as students return and new students take their first steps onto campus, we are reminded of the important job we have here at NC State. It is up to each of us to ensure that our students have the experiences and opportunities that will bring them success in the classroom, laboratory and, ultimately, in life.
We take our commitment to educating tomorrow’s engineers and computer scientists seriously. While classroom education is the necessary beginning of that education, it is just a beginning. Teaching our students to apply that learning in real world situations thereby assuring that they both “think and do” is also a critical part of what we must achieve to prepare them to compete in today’s global economy and solve the engineering and computer science challenges of the future.
In this issue we feature one of the many ways we provide that global learning opportunity — our study abroad programs. Through immersive study abroad experiences, our students travel around the world acquiring unique perspectives provided by classes and projects in multicultural and oftentimes unfamiliar environments. This is an important part of the education process because when they graduate, they will be competing not just with students from U.S. universities but also universities from around the world. And many of our graduates will go to work for global companies where they may be stationed in another country.
This fall, we are excited to welcome Dr. Julie Swann as the new head of the Edward P. Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering (ISE) and Dr. Srinath Ekkad as the new head of the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering (MAE). Dr. Donald Brenner has stepped into his new role as interim head of our Department of Materials Science and Engineering following the departure of Dr. Justin Schwartz. We are grateful to Dr. Paul Cohen (ISE) and Dr. Rich Gould (MAE) for their dedicated service as department heads and congratulate Justin on his appointment as the dean of engineering at Penn State University.
We are also excited about our upcoming Homecoming Celebration and the many alumni it attracts to the campus for a weekend of remembering times past and learning about the future of your college. Information about homecoming is available at go.ncsu.edu/homecoming.
As always, I invite you to visit, stay engaged with, and celebrate your college. I hope you enjoy this issue of NC State Engineering.
Louis A. Martin-Vega, Ph.D.