The University of Massachusetts Amherst
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Wolf Selected for Sixth Frontiers of Engineering Education Symposium

Tilman Wolf

According to the National Academy of Engineering (NAE), Tilman Wolf, the Associate Dean of Engineering (Graduate Studies and Operations) and a professor in our Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, has been selected among 77 of “the nation's most innovative, young engineering educators” to take part in the NAE's sixth Frontiers of Engineering Education (FOEE) symposium. Faculty members who are developing and implementing innovative educational approaches in a variety of engineering disciplines will come together for the two-and-a-half-day event, where they can share ideas, learn from research and best practices in education, and leave with a charter to bring about improvement in their home institutions. The symposium will be held from October 26 to 29 in Irvine, California. Read the full NAE press release.

Dr. Wolf is engaged in research and teaching in the areas of computer networks, computer architecture, and embedded systems. His research interests include Internet architecture, network routers, and embedded system security. Wolf is the co-author of a 2011 textbook, Architecture of Network Systems published by Morgan Kaufmann, which has been called “the most comprehensive book on network systems” published to date. His honors include: Best Paper Award, IEEE HPSR Conference, 2011; ECE Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award, 2010; College of Engineering Outstanding Teacher Award, 2008; College of Engineering Outstanding Junior Faculty Award, 2006; NSF CAREER Award, 2005; Lilly Teaching Fellowship, 2004; Fulbright Scholarship, 1996. 

The attendees were nominated by NAE members or deans and chosen from a highly competitive pool of applicants.

“The Frontiers of Engineering Education program brings together top university faculty to explore preparing engineers for the world’s great engineering challenges,” said NAE President Dan Mote. “It is a no-holds-barred look at the front-edge of engineering education."

As the symposium website explained, “The vision of the Frontiers of Engineering Education is to strengthen the engineering and innovation capacity and capability of the nation by catalyzing a vibrant community of emerging engineering education leaders. To achieve the mission of recognizing accomplishment, facilitating learning, broadening collaboration, and promoting dissemination of pioneering practice in engineering education, each year FOEE brings together some of the nation’s most engaged and innovative engineering educators in order to promote effective, substantive, and inspirational engineering education through a sustained dialogue within the emerging generation of innovative faculty.”

The website added that “Attendees are actively teaching in U. S. engineering programs and have recently implemented significant innovations in their classes. During the 2.5-day symposium, they participate in discussions and workshops focused on approaches to classroom, laboratory, project, experiential, computer-based, or other modes of preparing engineering students to work and lead in the 21st century. Attendees also have multiple opportunities to share their innovations with others, learn from best practice, and network with colleagues. They discuss the current and evolving contexts that should shape engineering and engineering education. The program will assist them in forming an on-going, self-supporting cohort committed to innovation and sustained excellence in engineering education.”

James M. Tien, Dean of the College of Engineering at the University of Miami and Chair of the FOEE Advisory Committee, observed that “Most of the faculty in higher education must adapt to changing times; from chalk boards to overheads, from classrooms to online education, and from traditional students to learners who are quite adept at navigating the Internet. As a consequence, faculty are not only needing to continuously update their course content but also their delivery approach so as to better engage the students. Research on learning, publications on teaching methods, and conferences on education are all trying to support the beleaguered faculty. So is the annual FOEE symposium, which brings together engineering faculty who are eager to share their innovative teaching approaches and to learn from their equally talented colleagues.” (October 2014)