IUPUI Adds Energy Engineering Degree, Hopes To Avoid Politics

Oct 17, 2017

IUPUI’s engineering department is adding an additional focus on the future of energy.

Purdue’s trustees voted last week to rename it the Department of Mechanical and Energy Engineering.

Dean David Russomanno says he wants to stay away from the politically-charged topic of the nation’s energy future, which he says he’s doing by encouraging IUPUI professors to be, in his words, “agnostic” about their research.

“As engineers and scientists, we have to approach our work very much where the data leads us and really try to separate that from opinions and other emotional factors.”

Indiana has been at the center of debate over how much coal the nation uses to generate electricity, with then-governor Mike Pence declaring the Obama administration was waging a co-called “war on coal.”

Purdue also recently announced a $20-million-dollar grant from the National Science Foundation to do work on controlling pollution from fossil fuels generated through hydraulic fracturing.