Message from the Dean

Marc P. Christensen

Today, perhaps more than ever, the world needs engineers. We are facing extreme challenges on every continent, ranging from clean air and drinking water to energy, medicine, the design of modern, smart cities, and the navigation of vast collections of data. The next generation of engineers must be equipped with not just the technical skills to tackle these challenges, but also the drive and passion to make a difference and the leadership abilities to turn ideas into reality. At Lyle, we are educating the next generation of engineering leaders. We engage with students to help them learn the technical skills they need, strategize with them to accelerate their development as leaders and provide a unique environment that helps them flourish as innovators. Companies looking for the next generation of leaders look to Lyle with good reason. Armed with both exceptional technical and leadership skills, our students and faculty stand out.

At Lyle, we believe that we are all born engaged learners. In our infancy, we begin to explore the world. We manipulate, test, assemble –and may even tear things apart. This curious play is the natural stage where each of us begins a journey to learn about the world. Unfortunately, somewhere along the way, most of us are bound by the concept of “book learning” – regurgitating predigested knowledge as a list of facts. At Lyle, our goal is to engage natural curiosity, to find ways to let students roll up their sleeves and experience the art and science of engineering through problem-solving.

Our students come to us with a set of passions― often a desire to make a difference in the world, to do something remarkable combined with diverse interests that extend well beyond an engineering discipline. Those passions make our students who they are. At Lyle, we don’t believe students should put a part of themselves on hold for four years while studying engineering. I encourage all of our students to immerse themselves in their interests across campus. The unique perspectives and skills our students gain from these experiences will help them become better innovators and more creative problem solvers.

The Lyle School is driven to help students translate their passions into purpose―to find not only a career but also a mission that makes life worth living, feeds the soul and nurtures a sense of play. We believe there is “No Problem Too Big.” If you choose to study here, we will be your partner in purposeful development. Through the Hart Center for Engineering Leadership, we’ll help set you on a trajectory to achieve all your life’s ambitions. With the support of Lyle faculty and staff, I’ve seen students accomplish incredible things because they applied their passion.

If you answer the call to become a Lyle engineer, brace yourself because it is going to be a heck of a ride.  

Marc P. Christensen, Ph.D., P.E.
Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering
Bobby B. Lyle Professor of Engineering Innovation