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Letter from the Dean

Resolve garners PRSA, CASE honors

Welcome to the third issue of Resolve, a magazine dedicated to research and educational innovation in the P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science at Lehigh University.

I am happy to report that not only do we continue to receive overwhelming feedback from our readership, but that we now have an award-winning magazine. The Philadelphia chapter of the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) recently awarded Resolve and Resolve Online first place in its category for Special Public Relations Programs, and the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) offered special recognition for the expanded online version. Moreover, during the National Science Foundation’s 2007 Engineering Education Awardees Conference, Resolve was presented as an exemplary model to communicate the results of complex science and engineering research to the general public.

These awards and citations, along with the lengthy backlog of exciting stories we have yet to tell, are great testimonies to the creative energy and talents of the collective Lehigh community, of which I am very proud to be a part.

As before, the content of Resolve is organized loosely around three clusters of research activities in Lehigh engineering:

Bio: Bio, Environmental and Molecular Engineering
Nano: Nanotechnology and Applications
Systems: Complex Engineering and Information Systems

In this current issue of the magazine, we feature rich stories that will give you a sense of the research being conducted across these sectors. For example, we review the success of “Little Ben,” a Toyota Prius converted into a driverless robotic car by engineers from Penn, Lehigh and Lockheed Martin to compete in the 2007 DARPA Urban Challenge in California. Little Ben overcame incredible odds to become one of just six vehicles to navigate and drive itself through the entire 60-mile course.

One particular moment captured the essence of excitement and the difficulty of the race; at a critical crossroads in the course, two of Ben’s competitors sat motionless, described by one media watcher as “hopelessly lost in apparent thought, contemplating the possibilities and outcomes” of their next maneuvers. The two cars blocked nearly the entire intersection. But with a “mission to complete and the software to complete it,” Little Ben quickly identified the necessary path, and drove flawlessly through the traffic jam – avoiding the obstacles and moving right along.

We have equally exciting stories about the latest advances in flexible displays and about an “optical bottle” that promises to shed light on particle interactions.

In every issue, we include an example of innovation in undergraduate engineering education. You will find in this issue the story of Lehigh’s Computer Science and Business (CSB) program, the first, and thus far only, undergraduate program of its kind to achieve dual accreditation in computer science and in business. CSB recognizes the critical importance of information technology in the corporate setting, and has proven indispensable in helping firms meet the new standards of their profession set by the Sarbanes-Oxley Act.

I hope you enjoy this issue of Resolve magazine. Please drop me a note to share your thoughts and comments.

S. David Wu, Dean and Iacocca Professor
P.C. Rossin College of Engineering and Applied Science
david.wu@lehigh.edu

“These awards and citations, along with the lengthy backlog of exciting stories we have yet to tell, are great testimonies to the creative energy and talents of the collective Lehigh community.”
—S. David Wu