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University of Wisconsin Madison College of Engineering
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Engineering plans and progress

Greetings! I hope you've enjoyed summer. It's very difficult to believe it has passed by so quickly and we're now at the start of a new school year. Today, we officially welcome our students to back campus for the 2013-2014 academic year—and we'd like to extend special greetings to the graduating class of 2017. 

We have had a productive summer on campus and have continued to move forward on several initiatives. In particular, Engineering Physics Professor and Chair Jake Blanchard has been working with several college committees to develop the foundation of the college strategic plan. Jake will be seeking your input throughout the coming academic year as he and the other department chairs and committees make progress on the strategic plan. I hope you will provide him feedback and ideas.

We will begin several initiatives in fall 2013. The first is an effort to revitalize our teaching and research infrastructure throughout the college, and in particular, we will upgrade several classrooms in Engineering Hall. In the coming months, you'll notice other changes throughout the College of Engineering campus as we seek to enhance public areas in ways that emphasize our successes and make those areas more inviting spaces. The Engineering Research Building and 1410 Engineering Drive also will receive much needed infrastructure repair. I know many of you have endured a summer of construction inconveniences but I can assure you our upcoming construction activities will occur at a much smaller scale than the athletics project that is just concluding. 

As we begin the new academic year, we also will have some changes in personnel. Brian Mattmiller, assistant dean for alumni and corporate relations, will be leaving the college to become the new director of external relations for the Morgridge Institute for Research, while Larry Casper, assistant dean for research and technology transfer, will be retiring. Although I have worked with Brian and Larry for just a short time, I want to thank them for their efforts on behalf of the college and of UW-Madison. We will miss them and wish them well as they begin new adventures.

Finally, we expect soon to announce a new associate dean for advancement, who will work closely with many of you to help you achieve your development goals. Our UW Foundation development directors also have moved into offices within the college. They are Ann Leahy (biomedical engineering and chemical and biological engineering), Betsy Burns (electrical and computer engineering), Dan Fallon (civil and environmental engineering and geological engineering), and Brad Green (mechanical engineering). Please join me in welcoming them, and as you encounter each part of this team, please introduce yourselves so that they can learn more about our departments and their activities.

The College of Engineering strives to be exemplary and as we begin this academic year, I'd like to ask each of you to help ensure we make our college a safe, friendly and welcoming environment for all. 

Renee Meiller
9/1/2013