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Growing STEM Education - page 3 / 17





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Dear Alumni and Friends,

from the dean

Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

I greatly appreciate the support, encouragement, and energy you all have provided in moving this college forward in new and exciting directions over the past several years. I know we can all feel proud that the College of Education at Purdue is ranked in the top tier of colleges and schools of education nationally. Our College of Education is characterized by the value we place on research and scholarly pursuits, our exceptional undergraduate and graduate programs, our collaborations with colleagues across campus which we encourage and support, and the promise for an even brighter future encouraged in part by the stellar new faculty we hired in the past four years.

  • e Campaign for Purdue has ended on a high note with a total of $1.7

billion raised to support new faculty, the establishment of Discovery Park, new buildings, and numerous new scholarships for undergraduate and graduate students. e College of Education added numerous new professional sta and tenure-track faculty lines to our ranks, twice surpassed the fundraising goal, and now has many new undergraduate and graduate scholarships. Over the course of the last four years we added four new endowed professorships through the very generous support of our alumni and friends of the College of Education. at brings the total number of named or endowed professorships to six, an amazing number for a college this size. Clearly we have grown, redirected our energies in new ways, and are poised for new leadership both at the university-level with President Córdova and at the college-level with the opportunity to attract new leadership at the dean’s level.

New Opportunity

  • is will be the last time I have an opportunity to address you through the College

of Education magazine. I came to Purdue University in 2003 and as of January, 2008 I will be taking on new opportunities and challenges as senior vice provost and dean of the Mary Lou Fulton College of Education at Arizona State University.

My time here at Purdue has been absolutely wonderful. I have certainly made many new friends, colleagues and have been energized and inspired by our faculty, students, alumni and supporters. When I rst arrived we focused our eorts on our reaccreditation by the National Council for Accreditation of Teacher Education (NCATE) and the publication of the College of Education strategic plan. More recently the College of Education has forged ahead in establishing new collaborations with the colleges of Science, Engineering, and Technology, focused on addressing in part the critical shortage our nation faces in our teacher corps, especially in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education (see page 8).

National Crisis

It is clear that with the dramatic growth projections for our nation that a well educated workforce must be in place if businesses and industries are to compete in the global economy. While Indiana has an excellent higher education system, the ability to prepare a well educated workforce to support a competitive edge must rely on pre-k−12 teachers, especially those in the STEM education disciplines.

  • college of education magazine FALL 2007

However, as noted in the quote to the right, not only is there a critical shortage of science and mathematics teachers at present, but the accelerating rate of retirements coupled with the population growth in Indiana and beyond creates a crisis of true national urgency. As a land-grant university it is imperative that the College of Education at Purdue respond in meeting this challenge.

What We’re Doing

It is in this context that we advanced four priorities in our strategic plan: Science education, mathematics education, literacy, and educational technology (see page 5). We have added faculty in each of these priority areas in an eort to enhance our ability to prepare even more highly qualied teachers, including those who work with elementary education pupils.

In this issue you will nd highlighted a number of successful initiatives that provide evidence that we are moving forward in addressing the urgency we face in preparing more highly qualied teachers who not only can address pre-k−12 content instruction in science and mathematics (see page 7) but teachers who are sensitive on how we go about teaching students of all backgrounds (see page 18).

You will also note in this issue that our eorts in increasing diversity among our students continue unabated (see page 19) and our international collaborations continue to attract increased attention across the globe (see pages 16-17).

As we can all appreciate, it is our students, faculty and sta who constitute the real core of our College of Education. I hope that you take the time to read some of the articles and highlights noted in this issue that celebrate their accomplishments, both on and o campus (see pages 14-15).

“Laying a foundation for a scientifically literate workforce begins with developing outstanding K-12 teachers in science and mathematics… Middle and high school mathematics and science teachers are more likely than not to teach outside their fields of study… A U.S. high school student has a 70% likelihood of being taught English by a teacher with a degree in English but about a 40% chance of studying chemistry with a teacher who was a chemistry major… About two-thirds of the nation’s teachers are expected to retire or leave the profession over the coming decade, so the nation’s schools will need to fill between 1.7 million and 2.7 million positions during that period, about 200,000 of them in secondary science and mathematics classrooms.”

Rising Above the Gathering Storm: Energizing and Employing America for a Brighter Economic Future, National Academies, 2006

  • e College of Education will continue to grow and evolve in new and exciting

directions and in ways that reect the intelligence, creativity and resourcefulness of our students and faculty. Please stay involved and connected—celebrate your association with the College of Education at Purdue!


George W. Hynd Dean, College of Education


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