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Greetings from Illinois Institute of Technology!

Our Illinois Tech community is growing once again as both new students and returning students are on campus to begin the new academic year. Much has taken place at the university over the summer that will further enhance our students' educational experience.   

Illinois Tech became a member of the Discovery Partners Institute, joining the University of Illinois System, University of Chicago, Northwestern University, and a number of international partners in this new endeavor aimed at uniting our universities to accelerate economic development in Chicago by partnering in research and enterprise development with current and future industries that will focus on technology.

We also named four new deans to our university: Lance Fortnow, dean of the College of Science; Reed Kroloff, Rowe Family College of Architecture Dean Endowed Chair; Anita K. Krug, dean of Chicago-Kent College of Law; and Jamshid Mohammadi, dean of the Graduate College and vice provost for graduate academic affairs, who has been with the university for more than 40 years.

The Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship continues to thrive. Designed by College of Architecture Professor John Ronan and headed by Executive Director Howard A. Tullman, the institute is well on its way to achieving the following goals: that all undergraduate students acquire superior innovation and entrepreneurship skills and experience; that strong partnerships are built with external organizations and entrepreneurs; that creative students interested in STEM fields are being recruited; and that it provides the tools and skills students need to solve complex and significant challenges. The building houses Illinois Tech’s Idea Shop, the Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program, and the Institute of Design, as well as visiting entrepreneurs and community collaborators. 

Earlier this year at the Kaplan Institute, a special event was held to announce that the ADEPT Cancer Imager Team received the final $500,000 award of the Nayar Prize I. The Nayar Family Foundation established a $1 million gift to fund the Nayar Prize to challenge Illinois Tech faculty, staff, and students to develop breakthrough, innovative projects that will, within three years, produce meaningful results with a societal impact. The foundation subsequently established Nayar Prize II and the finalist team of this second prize—the Data-Driven Crime Prevention team—is continuing efforts on that project.

Illinois Tech prepares students to anticipate, manage, and adapt to change through an educational experience that is rigorous in the classroom and broadening outside of the classroom. Throughout the past century, we have become a campus rich in diversity, welcoming students from 93 countries and faculty from prestigious universities across the United States and around the world. We expect our graduates to be successful professionals, comfortable in our global economy, and recognized as leaders in whatever future that they choose.

There is more we can and will accomplish. And I invite you to join us on our journey.

Alan W. Cramb