Message from the Dean

Purdue College of Science Dean Patrick J. Wolfe

Dear alumni and friends,

It is an incredible time to be connected to the College of Science, and I am pleased to bring you quite a bit of good news through this issue of Insights.

Data science is the theme of this issue and, not coincidentally, a strategic priority at Purdue, where the College is pivotal in growing computer science offerings, defining Purdue’s data science curricula and spearheading our research efforts. Sunil Prabhakar, who led these efforts exceptionally well through his role as head of the Department of Computer Science, will now lead Purdue’s Integrative Data Science Initiative (IDSI), ensuring significant steps forward in discovery and teaching. Through the IDSI, using the College’s Statistics Living-Learning Community as a model, Purdue is initiating the Data Mine, which will provide an educational foundation in data science for Purdue students all across campus.

Students are also the focus of our new STEM teaching building, which is already approved by our Board of Trustees and under construction, for a scheduled opening in 2020. Housing state-of-the-art labs for biology and chemistry courses, the building is the first new space of its kind on the Purdue campus in 50 years. The new facility also presents enormous opportunities for research collaborations and integrated curricula.

“From the eye of Hurricane Irma to the depths of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, College of Science faculty are making profound scientific contributions to understanding our universe.”

Frederick L. Hovde Dean of Science Patrick J. Wolfe

Purdue kicks off its 150th anniversary celebration through its 150 Years of Giant Leaps campaign in September 2018, which is also the College of Science’s feature month for the sesquicentennial. I’m delighted that two of our faculty members have received the very impressive 150th Anniversary Professor honor in advance of the yearlong celebration — Professor of Chemistry Christine Hrycyna, and Professor of Physics and Astronomy Erica Carlson.

Our faculty continue to break ground in every field, as these Insights stories illustrate. From the eye of Hurricane Irma to the depths of the Cordilleran Ice Sheet, College of Science faculty are making profound scientific contributions to understanding our universe.

It has been my honor and pleasure to serve in my new role as dean of the College of Science. I am fortunate to work in close proximity to the incredible achievements of our faculty, students, and alumni, and I look forward to celebrating with all of you the beginning of the next remarkable 150 years. 

With very best wishes from all of us here in the College,
Patrick J. Wolfe
Frederick L. Hovde Dean of Science and Miller Family Professor of Statistics and Computer Science