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Innovations Home Innovations Volume 4, Issue 9, November 2010 Archive

Dean’s message

Engineering with broad shoulders

Engineering with broad shoulders

A key tenet of Berkeley Engineering is to educate leaders. To us, engineering leadership extends beyond simply creating new technologies and managing technology innovation. Truly transformative engineering leadership calls for a comprehensive understanding of the economic, legal, social and environmental implications of novel and emerging technologies and services in societal scale systems.

Now we have a direct path to provide our students with the educational resources to achieve just that. We are proud to announce a bold, new program designed to meet the mounting demand for engineers who can successfully lead projects and organizations in global environments: It is the Berkeley Engineering Professional Master’s Program, a one-year, 24-unit course of study culminating in the master of engineering (M.Eng.) degree.

The first major initiative of the Coleman Fung Institute for Engineering Leadership, this program is designed to close the gap between engineering theory and industry practice and groom engineers for top CEO, CFO and other executive positions in leading technology-dependent enterprises and in the top global centers of innovation.

After months of intensive research, consultation and planning, we are now preparing the curriculum for a fall 2011 launch. Several programs will be offered on campus, taught through the college’s departments by top engineering faculty. Coursework is based on the “T-model” for engineering leadership education: vertically supported by deep technical specialization (represented by the vertical portion of a capital “T”) and extending outward through broad instruction in key management and leadership concepts (the cross atop the “T”).

All of the programs will share the common core curriculum in engineering leadership, an entirely new menu of value-added skill sets including financial and risk management tools, organizational leadership, enterprise strategy and policy and regulatory frameworks. A team-oriented “capstone” project will bring groups of students face-to-face with industry and faculty mentors to develop their learning by applying emerging technologies to solve societal-scale, real-world problems.

Our vision is to continue to evolve the program over time in collaboration with industry partners and add to our undergraduate entrepreneurship courses as well as our executive education offerings.

Once again, we thank Coleman Fung (B.S.’87 IEOR) for the generous gift that allows us to expand the college’s offerings and amplify its beneficial impact by educating a new type of engineer, one with broad shoulders, leadership skills and the outlook of a global citizen.

I welcome your thoughts and ideas.

S. Shankar Sastry
Dean and Roy W. Carlson Professor of Engineering
Director, Blum Center for Developing Economies
Email Dean Sastry

Upcoming events

November 5: Rebuilding Safe, Satisfactory, and Sustainable Houses After Earthquakes: Berkeley Engineering alumna Elizabeth Hausler (M.S.'98, Ph.D.'02 CEE) presents her work with Build Change, a non-profit social enterprise that designs earthquake-resistant houses in developing countries and trains builders, homeowners, engineers, and government officials to build them.

November 19: Preparing Engineers for Leadership: Coleman Fung, founder and chairman of OpenLink Financial and advisory board chair of the Fung Institute, presents the latest in the College's View from the Top Lecture Series. Lunch provided.

In this issue:

New Blum Center headquarters opens on north side

With campus and national dignitaries on hand and a sunny Homecoming Friday as a backdrop, the doors of Richard C. Blum Hall officially opened on Friday, October 8. It was a big occasion to celebrate what one project architect called a "little jewel box" of a building, small in scale but grand in its historic origins and its lofty goals. The program it will house also bears the name of Richard C. Blum, Haas alumnus, UC Regent and global philanthropist who championed the center to mobilize Berkeley students and faculty against global poverty.

See full story.

Flight delays cost more than just time

Domestic flight delays put a $32.9 billion dent in the U.S. economy, and about half that cost is borne by airline passengers, according to a study led by UC Berkeley researchers and released last month. The comprehensive report analyzed flight delay data from 2007 to calculate the economic impact on both airlines and passengers, including the cost of lost demand and the collective impact of these costs on the U.S. economy. The report was commissioned by the Federal Aviation Administration to clarify key discrepancies in earlier studies.

See full story.

The fine art of engineering restraint

Amid the busy world of Massachusetts General Hospital, Dino Di Carlo (B.S.'02, Ph.D.'06 BioE) experienced a well-known but oft-forgotten truism: technologies need to be simple to have an impact. As a postdoc there, Di Carlo observed that complex diagnostic technologies used in complex biomedical experiments often exacerbated research challenges, resulting in higher data failure rates. Today, the young assistant professor teaches the art of engineering restraint to his bioengineering students at UCLA and employs it in his research.

See full story.

Innovations is published online by the Marketing and Communications Office of the UC Berkeley College of Engineering. Innovations is a monthly online update featuring timely reports on groundbreaking research and other innovative projects done by Berkeley engineers.

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