While each fall academic term brings with it an element of excitement and new opportunities, this year the feeling has reached a crescendo. By the time that you are reading this, our Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship will have opened its doors on Mies Campus.
As many of you may recall, the university announced an $11 million gift and challenge grant from Illinois Tech Board of Trustees member Ed Kaplan (ME ’65), along with his wife, Carol, in 2014; two years later we broke ground for the Kaplan Institute, the first new academic university building in more than four decades. As co-founder of Zebra Technologies, a global leader in barcode printing, Ed is passionate about channeling his entrepreneurial know-how to students through the Kaplan Institute. You can read about Ed’s career rise and other stories on the Kaplan Institute in this issue of Illinois Tech Magazine.
In other outstanding news, Peter Kilpatrick joined Illinois Tech as provost and senior vice president for academic affairs, on August 1. Peter came to our institution from the University of Notre Dame, where he served as professor and McCloskey Dean of Engineering. He has already been working closely with faculty and administrators, and is eager to advance Illinois Tech’s commitment to innovation, entrepreneurship, and experiential learning through the Kaplan Institute. Read more about our new provost and why he came to Illinois Tech in this issue.
Our university community also celebrates its ranking as #96 on the U.S. News & World Report 2019 Best Colleges list of national universities and that this term marks our largest class of first-year students in more than three decades, at 608 students. Members of the class hail from 34 countries and 38 states, with 127 students from Chicago; 14 percent are international students, 27 percent are underrepresented minority students, and 31 percent have declared that they are first-generation college students. I am also happy to report that this year’s class is 31 percent female.
With robust programming, new leadership, and many fresh faces throughout our campuses, the future of Illinois Tech continues to look bright. If you are contemplating a visit to your alma mater, this fall may be the ideal time to do so. Be part of our continued celebration as Illinois Tech’s reputation grows along with our pride in being part of such an outstanding academic institution.
Alan W. Cramb