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From Dean Williams: Built to succeed

“We should all be concerned about the future because we will have to spend the rest of our lives there.”

That enduring quote is attributed to esteemed Ohio State engineering alumnus Charles Kettering, one of America’s most accomplished innovators.

Colloquially, it sums up the mission statement of our college. From preparing professional engineers and educators to addressing the world’s challenges through our research, we are focused on the future. We also look ahead as we plan the facilities we use to carry out that mission.

The future of medicine is collaboration. Complex illnesses require commensurate complexity in the teams of experts researching lifesaving treatments. Rest assured, the College of Engineering is a frequent research collaborator with our College of Medicine colleagues. And today, we are literally building on the concept of collaboration near the corner of West 19th and College Avenues. Our Biomedical and Materials Engineering Complex renovation and construction project is underway. The modernization of aging buildings will co-locate our Department of Biomedical Engineering and Department of Materials Science and Engineering. This will certainly bolster Ohio State’s leadership and collaboration in the rapidly growing field of biomaterials.

The future of aviation will be defined by innovation as well, but airlines are increasingly concerned about workforce availability, namely pilots. Already a national leader in preparing future pilots and aviation professionals, our capacity and capabilities have now expanded with the new Austin E. Knowlton Executive Terminal and Aviation Education Center at The Ohio State University Airport. The beautiful facility on West Case Road in northwest Columbus opened its doors at the beginning of this semester.

And the future of mobility—or how we and the products we use get around—is about getting smarter. Smarter about energy usage and about safety. It is no secret that autonomous vehicles are central to a smart mobility future. And it’s no surprise that the College of Engineering-affiliated Transportation Research Center in East Liberty, the largest independent automotive proving ground in North America, is leading driverless vehicle R&D. Earlier this summer, construction began on the  SMARTCenter—a state-of-the-art automated and connected vehicle testing facility expected to be complete by the end of 2019. Funding for the $45 million project was provided by the State of Ohio, JobsOhio and Ohio State, including commitments from the College of Engineering.

On and off campus, not only are we concerned about the future, but we are actively planning to spend (and improve) our lives there.

If you would like to help your College of Engineering impact future students and deliver future innovations, consider a gift to the Priority Fund.

David B. Williams
Monte Ahuja Endowed Dean's Chair
Dean of the College of Engineering
Executive Dean of the Professional Colleges


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