College of Design, Engineering and Commerce Freshmen Gather for the First Time at Orientation

Ron Kander, executive dean of the College of Design, Engineering and Commerce (DEC), spoke to incoming students at DEC orientation on Aug. 19.

The incoming students in the new College of Design, Engineering and Commerce (DEC) met collectively for the first time on Aug. 19 for the DEC orientation.

Ron Kander, executive dean of the College, and a few other administrators, including Michael Leonard, associate professor of industrial design and interim academic dean of the School of Design and Engineering, and Sue Lehrman, dean of the School of Business Administration, addressed the students. Beyond teaching the ins-and-outs of each student’s area of study, Kander said, students will learn to work together in teams and collaborate with those in other disciplines.

The College of Design, Engineering and Commerce offers an integrated curriculum that retains the core learning of each discipline while forging new collaborations among the fields of design, engineering and business. By bringing these disciplines together, the College pushes students to think beyond the boundaries of existing disciplines and focus on market-driven innovation through teamwork, collaboration and connections with industry partners. And, through studying in a transdisciplinary environment, students will become more capable professionals in their own field—drawing fresh insights through their knowledge of related disciplines.

The development of a unique curriculum in the College of Design, Engineering and Commerce already is having a dramatic impact on PhilaU students as evidenced by the high level of collaboration taking place among the programs and with industry partners, including the new DEC Fellows program. Click here to read about PhilaU’s first two DEC Fellows workshops involving improvisational comedians from Second City and designers from Smart Design. PhilaU faculty also met with industry experts to prepare for the first DEC course, Integrative Design Processes, which begins this fall semester.

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