IU Bloomington welcomes inaugural group of intelligent systems engineering students

  • Aug. 23, 2016


BLOOMINGTON, Ind. -- Indiana University Bloomington welcomed its inaugural group of engineering students this week. This marks a turning point for IU as it launches the first engineering program in its history.

The 25 undergraduate and 20 Ph.D. students joined IU's intelligent systems engineering program, which is focused on the development of small-scale, networked and mobile technology.

The undergraduate students were admitted to the Bachelor of Science in intelligent systems engineering degree program through a selective direct admissions process. The median high school GPA for the incoming class was 3.9 on a 4-point scale, and the average SAT score was 1297. Of the incoming class, 20 are Indiana residents. Six of the new students are women, five are first-generation college students, and one is a Wells Scholar.

The Ph.D. class has 20 members, including five transferring from other IU doctoral programs. This includes two employees of the Naval Surface Warfare Center-Crane Division in Crane, Ind.

"I couldn’t be more pleased with the quality of students at both the undergraduate and graduate level who have come to this program," said Raj Acharya, dean of the IU School of Informatics and Computing, which houses the department. "Both the students and the faculty are pioneers at IU with a new vision for engineering."

The Department of Intelligent Systems Engineering, chaired by IU Distinguished Professor Geoffrey Fox, welcomed 10 faculty members. This includes a founding core of five transfers from other IU departments and five tenure-track faculty who joined this fall. Two additional faculty hires will arrive in January.

"The vision for IU's intelligent systems engineering program attracted a diverse group of faculty from inside and outside of IU," Acharya said. "They were drawn to the unique opportunity this trailblazing approach to engineering provides for research that will break new ground across a range of areas."

The program focuses on small-scale and mobile technologies -- from designing tiny devices that detect impending seizures to realizing the promise of a hyper-networked Internet of Things. The program offers six focus areas, which were developed with input from industry leaders:

  • Bioengineering
  • Computer engineering
  • Cyber-physical systems
  • Environmental engineering
  • Molecular and nanoscale engineering
  • Neuro-engineering

There are three distinctive curriculum modules at both the undergraduate and graduate level that reflect the unique focus of the program: intelligent systems; modeling and simulation, leveraging IU's leadership in high-performance computing and cyberinfrastructure; and cyber-physical systems.

"The intelligent systems engineering program reflects our commitment to exploring the frontiers of research in emerging fields while also drawing upon our historic strengths in fields such as biology, chemistry, physics, environmental science, high-performance computing, cybersecurity, and psychological and brain sciences," said IU Bloomington Provost and Executive Vice President Lauren Robel. "We look forward to the exciting research that will be produced by the program’s faculty and students in the coming years."

The intelligent systems engineering program was developed in response to a critical need for engineering in south central Indiana that was identified in a report from the Battelle Technology Partnership Practice in 2014. An IU faculty task force developed a detailed plan, and in April 2015, the Indiana University trustees approved a proposal to establish a new engineering program on the IU Bloomington campus. The bachelor’s and Ph.D. degrees in intelligent systems engineering were approved by the Indiana Commission for Higher Education in August 2015.

IU plans to add a master's degree program in 2018.

The inaugural class of undergraduate intelligent systems engineering students at IU.

The inaugural class of undergraduate intelligent systems engineering students at IU. | Photo by Indiana University

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Raj Acharya

Raj Acharya | Photo by Indiana University

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Media Contacts

Kelsey Keag

  • IU Bloomington School of Informatics and Computing
  • Office 812-855-4125
  • kkeag@indiana.edu

Kevin Fryling

  • IU Communications
  • Office 812-856-2988
  • kfryling@iu.edu