Harvard University Planning Major Expansion of Engineering Program
Harvard University is planning a major expansion of its engineering program, including a 67 percent increase in the size of the faculty and the possible establishment of a separate school.
Dr. Venkatesh Narayanamurti, dean of the Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences, told The Boston Globe he’s working on a plan to boost the faculty from 60 to 100 full-time professors, which would cost about $400 million.
Narayanamurti also said he wants the number of undergraduates majoring in engineering fields, including computer science and applied mathematics, to grow from about 350 this year to 600.
Narayanamurti said Harvard will focus on strategic areas, such as bioengineering and the interface of biology and applied physics, math and computer science.
Last spring, a report that was part of Harvard’s ongoing curriculum review suggested the possibility of establishing a School of Applied Sciences, Engineering and Technology.
The report said Harvard had “underinvested” in the engineering and technology development. It said land in Allston, Mass., where Harvard is planning a major expansion, offered an opportunity for growth.
Boosting the size of the faculty would help Harvard to compete with engineering programs at the California Institute of Technology and Princeton University, Narayanamurti said.
It would also be better able to compete against even larger engineering schools, at Cornell University and Stanford University.
Narayanamurti said Harvard would complement the Massachusetts Institute of Technology more than compete with it, because the schools are so different.
— The Associated Press
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