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News Release

University of Minnesota Institute of Technology changing name to College of Science and Engineering

Change will more clearly describe unique combination of science and engineering disciplines

Contacts: Ryan Mathre, University News Service, (612) 625-0552, mathre@umn.edu

Rhonda Zurn, Institute of Technology, (612) 626-7959, rzurn@umn.edu

MINNEAPOLIS / ST. PAUL (12/11/2009) —The University of Minnesota Board of Regents has approved a name change for the University’s Institute of Technology to the College of Science and Engineering, effective July 1, 2010.

The purpose of the change is to more clearly describe the unique combination of science and engineering disciplines within the college to prospective students and faculty, business partners and research-granting agencies.

“The current college name of the Institute of Technology (with its acronym IT) has become increasingly problematic in terms of securing financial support and recognition for critical academic programs,” said Steven L. Crouch, dean of the college. “Today, IT has come to mean Information Technology to virtually everyone. In addition, few people outside the university have an understanding of the difference between the Institute of Technology and various research institutes at the University that do not have academic degree programs.”

The Institute of Technology Dean’s Advisory Board, comprised of alumni and business leaders, recommended the change at their fall 2008 meeting and asked Dean Crouch to pursue a name change for the college. Over the last year, the dean and his staff have gathered input from a variety of stakeholders, including alumni, students, faculty, staff, business leaders and other groups.

Members of the Institute of Technology Dean’s Advisory Board have agreed to donate private funds to cover the costs of the name change to ensure that no funds are taken away from any other important financial matters this year due to this change.

Preparations for the name change will begin this month, with full implementation this summer including the launch of a new College of Science and Engineering Web site and revised materials for new student orientation and prospective student events.

The Institute of Technology was formed in 1935 when the university combined programs in engineering, chemistry, architecture and mining. Today, the college encompasses 10 engineering programs, computer science, mathematics, statistics and five physical sciences including physics, chemistry, astrophysics, geology and geophysics. The University of Minnesota is the only major research institution in the United States that combines the science and engineering disciplines within one academic unit of the university.

The Institute of Technology also oversees or is part of more than a dozen interdisciplinary research centers and facilities, including major National Science Foundation centers such as the National Center for Earth-surface Dynamics at the St. Anthony Falls Laboratory, the Institute for Mathematics and its Applications, and the Engineering Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power.

The college currently enrolls more than 7,000 undergraduate and graduate students and employs about 400 faculty. The college has more than 58,000 living science and engineering alumni. About half of those alumni live in the Twin Cities metro area.

 

Tags: College of Science and Engineering

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