Dean's Message – Spring 2013

Spring 2013 | Nicholas J. Altiero, Dean

Nicholas J. Altiero, Ph.D.In 2006, the School of Science and Engineering (SSE) was established under the post-Katrina “Tulane University Plan for Renewal.” During its first year, 2006-07, a vision for this new school was articulated and a strategic plan was outlined for the achievement of that vision. It was a ten-year plan with clear objectives and with defined metrics to measure progress. We are now entering the final quarter of the 2012-13 fiscal year, the SSE’s seventh year, and by every measure we have exceeded expectations regarding where we would be at this point in the implementation of the plan.

Tulane University is now engaged in a planning process that will set the course for the University over the next ten years and beyond. This process began this past fall with the goal of having a plan in place by the outset of the 2013-14 fiscal year. This initiative has lead the SSE to revisit its strategic plan and to revise and redirect it in light of what we have accomplished, what we have learned over the past seven years, and the significant changes that are occurring in higher education and in the STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) fields.

On April 12, the SSE Board of Advisors will hold its semi-annual meeting on the Tulane campus. That meeting will focus entirely on the SSE strategic plan and the role of the SSE in the strategic plan of Tulane University. President Scott Cowen will be on the agenda, as will Provost Michael Bernstein. When the new SSE strategic plan is completed, it is my intention to post the key elements of that plan to the SSE web site and to regularly report on progress toward achievement of the goals of that plan in this Newsletter.

These are challenging times for higher education. Concerns about college affordability and about the nation’s capacity to invest in research have put enormous pressure on university budgets. In order to continue our success and to achieve our goals, we will need to be increasingly creative and entrepreneurial. We will also need the support of alumni and friends of the University and the School. Annual giving to the School of Science and Engineering has increased substantially each year of its existence. With a clear vision of where we are going and how we intend to get there, I am convinced that support for the SSE will continue to increase and the School will grow even stronger in the years ahead.

School of Science and Engineering, 201 Lindy Boggs Center, New Orleans, LA 70118 504-865-5764