College of Engineering University of Wisconsin-Madison
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EPISODE: The Engineering Physics Department Newsletter


Spring / Summer 2007
Featured articles

HIdden gems:
New composites are stiffer than diamond

Proof expands limits
of composite materials

Study helps nanotech researchers hone their outreach skills

all-platform friendly

Ray Fonck to head
DOE Office of Fusion Energy Science

New funding

Regular Features

Message from the chair

Department News

Faculty Profile:
Matt Allen

Alumni News


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Portrait of Michael Corradini, EP Chair

Michael L. Corradini, Chair
(View larger image)

Decorative initial cap Engineering education is continually evolving as our students’ backgrounds and cultural diversity evolve and grow. This creates new demands for us as faculty to create a stimulating learning environment that provides the students with educational opportunities that motivate them to learn science and engineering fundamentals and apply them in current and emerging real-world applications that advance the public good. That is the real essence of responsible engineering practice. As an engineering faculty member at UW-Madison and as chair of the National Academy Committee on Engineering Education, I see this as one of our most important challenges in the coming years.

Department to celebrate 120th anniversary of Engineering Mechanics
in October 2007

birthday cake


Join us during Engineers' Day on Oct. 26 and 27, 2007 for lunch, lab tours and dinner on Friday as well as a gathering on Saturday morning before the Badger Homecoming football game. E-mail Mike Corradini at if you plan to attend any of the events.

In 2005, the college formed a seven-member 2010 task force following a National Academy of Engineering workshop. The task force has met weekly to discuss ways to re-create a college of the future. The task force has sought input from the UW-Madison community by hosting two college-wide meetings and four smaller focus group meetings, which provided invaluable perspectives and ideas. More recently, the task force formed the 2010 Roundtable—a group of two-dozen members of the college (two from EP) charged with understanding the changing environment for higher education and its implications for the College of Engineering and developing an action plan that includes changes in course curriculum and delivery to meet the new challenges in undergraduate education.

To transform the planning to reality, the 2010 Task Force solicited proposals that provide innovations in contemporary undergraduate engineering education. I am proud to say that of the 29 proposals submitted eight proposals were from EP faculty working as part of a larger interdisciplinary team and five of 11 proposals funded via discretionary funding involved faculty and staff from EP:

• Certificate in risk, reliability and uncertainty in decision-making

• Engineering for energy sustainability certificate

• Energy and sustainability introductory course

• UW-Chinese university summer program

• Engineering problem-solving with computers.

In my view, this is only the beginning of the innovations and activities needed. For UW-Madison to be recognized and regarded as truly an innovative national and international leader in engineering education, we need to do much more. It has been suggested that we form an “engineering school of practice” where engineering students at the BS and MS level address real-world needs in a design and problem-solving environment with practicing engineers as well as faculty. This could create a new avenue of activity for our faculty and interested engineering alumni to engage and challenge the students in a novel ways. I invite you to provide your opinions on these activities and follow their evolution at:

Michael L. Corradini, Chair
147 Engineering Research Building
1500 Engineering Dr.
Madison, WI 53706-1687

Tel: 608/263-1646
Fax: 608/263-7451


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Copyright 2007 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System

Date last modified: Friday, 15-June-2007 11:49:00 CDT
Date created: 15-Junec-2007