A promising year

A university campus is a great place to be in the fall, and that certainly is the case at Iowa State. Ames has been bustling with activity the past two weeks with the presidential candidate debate, the Straw Poll, and the arrival of students at the start of the academic year.

Summer proved to be busy, too, within the College of Engineering. We completed our five-year strategic plan, and you can read it and follow our key performance indicators here. I am excited about how the plan charts our course forward as a modern land-grant institution and charges our faculty and students to be engineers who make a difference.

Our faculty and staff were also busy hosting summer programs for aspiring engineers of all ages. We offered five different Iowa State Engineering Kids camps and six National Science Foundation Research Experience for Undergraduates programs—important work that reinforces the hands-on nature and fun of engineering. Through our precollege programs like ISEK, including an excellent camp for girls-only, we are building early interest with a view toward those students becoming Cyclone engineers down the road.

By all indications, we will set yet another record for enrollment in the College of Engineering.  And after having the opportunity to greet many freshmen as they moved into the dormitories last week, it’s clear to me that they are bringing high aspirations for themselves, and expectations of us, as their journey at Iowa State begins.

We are also building the faculty ranks and welcoming 12 new faculty members to the College of Engineering. I am excited by the intellect and diversity of our new colleagues, and the expertise they bring in such areas as wind power, robotics, and biomaterials.

We are off and running for a promising new school year.