Welcome to the Spring 2018 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.

In this issue of our magazine, we share exciting news of transformational activities taking shape in and around the Rossin College. These activities center around the College’s top strategic priorities—interdisciplinary research and experiential learning—both of which bring together teams of our faculty members, students, and partners to address challenging research problems and to provide productive learning environments.

Based on results of the College’s faculty-led Envisioning Process, Lehigh is has launched three new Interdisciplinary Research Institutes (IRIs) that will enable the University to solidify and further develop its strengths in key areas, and to lead on the national and international stage.

Interdisciplinary team science is essential to the solutions of society’s most pressing challenges. Lehigh’s IRIs are designed to help lead the way. The University’s inaugural Institutes are focused on nanotechnology, materials, and devices; data, intelligent systems, and computation; and cyber–physical infrastructure and energy.

These Institutes will enhance Lehigh’s culture of interdisciplinary excellence, and build upon this culture to incubate and catalyze teams of scholars that pursue fundamental and applied research in areas of broad societal importance. As beacons of this scholarly excellence to the world, the Institutes will communicate and promote Lehigh’s research productivity, impact, and reputation in these critical domains.

The cover feature focuses on work underway around the new Institute for Data, Intelligent Systems, and Computation. Work in this Institute revolves around the study of problems that involve massive amounts of data and/or large-scale computations, and developing the science that enables the extraction of useful and actionable information across disciplines and research fields. This Institute is an expression of Lehigh’s emerging strength and commitment in this interdisciplinary field of study and exploration, as well as a model for our future as a research and educational enterprise.

The Institute will be housed in the unpretentiously-named Building C on Lehigh’s expanding Mountaintop Campus. Over the past five years, a “revolutionary overhaul” of the building has taken place, transforming the colossal, midcentury structure into a hub of interdisciplinary research and experiential learning. The building is also home to Lehigh’s innovative Mountaintop Initiative, as described in our interview with Khanjan Mehta, Lehigh’s inaugural Vice Provost of Creative Inquiry and Director for the Mountaintop Initiative.

The interdisciplinary Mountaintop team projects are just one component of our strategic focus on experiential learning. The experiential learning opportunities available to our student enable them to find their passion and connect more deeply with their chosen fields of study. Note that our inside back cover, we highlight Team Soterra, one of the exciting projects that we are supporting through our Experiential Learning Fund.

Core facilities that house state-of-the-art equipment are essential enablers of our cutting-edge research and educational programs. In this issue, we highlight the outstanding success of all three Lehigh teams awarded grants from the intensely-competitive annual Major Research Instrumentation (MRI) program of the National Science Foundation. The resulting equipment will find their homes in our Materials Characterization and our Nanofabrication Facilities.

Especially during this exciting time of growth and transformation, thank you for your interest in Lehigh engineering and the Rossin College! Please drop me a line with your thoughts and comments.