Newsletter June 2020

Bloebaum, Christina

Congratulations to our graduates! We had 134 undergraduate and graduate students successfully finish their requirements this past spring. We are so very proud of them, as well as all our students who continued to progress in their programs despite the incredible challenges that COVID-19 created. At the same time, I want to state how incredibly proud I am of all our faculty, staff and administrators, who immediately committed themselves to ensuring our students' success. We saw some amazing examples of innovative delivery of curriculum and creative engagement activities across the entire College. From kits sent home to our Programmable Logic Controller II class to continue their hands-on experience, to students produced amazing videos of their at-home UAV projects, our faculty and staff embodied out Students First commitment in establishing these innovative opportunities.

This spring also saw our very first group of engineering graduates from our Aerospace Engineering program, launched four years ago. We are so excited to be growing not only our applied engineering technology program offerings, but also our more theoretical engineering programs. In fact, in Fall 2020 we will officially launch our just approved Cybersecurity Engineering program. This is an interdisciplinary undergraduate engineering program in which hardware, software, networking and user/attacker issues are designed within a systems engineering context to ensure security for the lifetime of the system. These two theoretical engineering programs, along with our Mechatronics Engineering program (the only such program in the state of Ohio), reflect the importance we place on systems thinking and systems integration in engineering, given their inherent interdisciplinarity.

CAE remains unique across the country with our synergistic mix of aeronautics, engineering and engineering technology programs and faculty. This has positioned us to pursue not only unique
curricular programs that are in-demand across numerous industries, but also to enable our faculty to work across the college to attack unique research challenges. A perfect example pertains to our expertise in Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), an area in which we are launching a new BS in Aeronautics concentration in UAS this upcoming Fall, while also demonstrating leadership in the research community. In just this past year, our faculty engaged in successful grants that brought in more than eight times that of last year, with the portion coming to our college directly being a four-fold increase. Our faculty were engaged in three out of six awards granted by the Ohio Federal Research Network to advance unmanned aerial systems in the state. Of the total $7.5 million awarded by OFRN, our faculty were engaged in successful projects totaling $3.74 million.

As we think on strategies for our upcoming academic year, we will follow the university’s commitment to engage in meaningful but safe in-person instruction and interaction where it makes sense. One thing that sets our college apart from others, beyond the interdisciplinary nature of our programs and faculty, is the commitment to experiential learning. We are working hard to make this a reality for our students in the Fall semester, while ensuring we are following the university and CDC guidelines. We were delighted to be able to get our Professional Pilot students back in the air in May by establishing and implementing such guidelines, in conjunction and with the wonderful support of our Kent State administrators. Seeing our planes back in the air is a reminder that while life most certainly changed dramatically for us all, we will continue to work hard to get our students across the college flying high and on a path to the careers they envision.

We look forward to hosting visits once more a little later this year. Please be on the lookout for more information regarding visiting campus. We are so thankful for your support as alumni and friends of CAE. Please continue to stay in touch, reach out to have a conversation, and remember always that we are committed to the Kent State guiding principle that Flashes Take Care of Flashes. And you are part of our Flashes community! Let us know how we can help you in any way.