Dear Alumni, Students, Faculty, Staff, Donors and Friends,
We held our first ECE Industrial Board of Advisors (IBA) meeting since Covid on 5-26-22 in the new $80M Belknap Academic Building. I would like to thank our members for showing up and providing valuable input and feedback: Tim Reilly, Dr. Nick Jewell, Dr. Matt Turner, David Gibbs, and Carl Sullivan via Teams. I updated the IBA and faculty on our enrollment and retention challenges, research, alumni engagement and facility upgrades. After lunch, the ECE-IBA got a personal golf cart tour of Belknap campus and saw our ECE research centers and where the new $75M engineering building will be located.
Our enrollment has finally stabilized after seeing a steady decrease in undergraduate enrollment of 25% between fall 2018 (255 students) and fall 2021 (192 students). Our graduate enrollment was not hit as hard and is only down 15% over the same time frame. The good news is some of our recruiting efforts have already started paying dividends. As of May, we have an incoming SSoE freshman class of 49 students for the fall of 2022 with an interest in ECE versus only 26 students in the fall of 2021 or an 89% increase! Improving our enrollment and retention numbers will continue to be my number one priority. There are updates below on our new MSEE online degree that was approved in April and we have already started enrolling students for this fall semester. Also, below please see some of the before and after pictures of the labs, lobby and conference room in WS Speed. As always, please feel free to send me your ideas for making ECE better as well as any updates or newsworthy items we can use for our next newsletter. I look forward to hearing from you.