From the Dean

Jeffrey Roberts


This academic year, the College of Science has been in the thick of the Purdue Moves campaign, a unified effort to grow the University’s leadership in the fields of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

In the college, we are looking to grow the Department of Computer Science in terms of student enrollment, facilities and professorships. With the opening of the Drug Discovery Building, Distinguished Professor of Chemistry
Phil Low’s decades of work in developing cancer treatment drugs is getting a new push, too, especially after positive reviews from the European Union for his new drug vintafolide. After approval, the drug would be used to treat lung and ovarian cancers.

No matter how big, every move forward that the College of Science makes usually requires some collaboration. In this issue of Insights, we explore how some of these collaborations work and how they came to be.

In computer science, the combined efforts of leaders like department head Sunil Prabhakar, assistant department head Tim Korb and associate professor Jennifer Neville have helped the program shine both nationally and in the eyes of the Purdue administration.

Collaborations come at all levels. Dozens of computer science undergraduate students collaborated to create the first BoilerMake hackathon, a 36-hour event where 400 collegiate computer programmers from around the nation descended upon West Lafayette to create brand new apps, websites and code.

Our departments collaborate in numerous ways. For example, the actuarial science program is one of the most successful in the college yet its shared relationship with the departments of Mathematics and Statistics is an interesting one.

Rival schools can collaborate, too. Learn the history of Purdue’s longstanding relationship with the Indiana University School of Medicine. While bitter rivals on the basketball court, Purdue’s Department of Biological Sciences has helped Indiana’s future doctors become experts on molecular and cellular biology, physiology and anatomy for decades. The College of Science collaborates with Purdue’s colleges of Veterinary Science and Pharmacy to ensure that these future docs leave medical school as fully trained medical experts.

Collaboration is key in the College of Science, and I hope you enjoy reading about the results of it now and in the future.

Jeffrey T. Roberts
Frederick L. Hovde Dean of the College of Science