Major international engineering deans conference headed to Albuquerque

November 1, 2018 - By Kim Delker

dean's conference photo

A major gathering of deans of engineering from around the globe is coming to Albuquerque this month.

The joint annual summit of the World Engineering Education Forum (WEEF) and the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC). WEEF-GEDC 2018 will be held Nov 11-16 at the Albuquerque Convention Center. This is the first time the event will be held in the United States. The theme of the week will be “Peace Engineering,” which will focus on science- and engineering-based solutions to the world’s grand challenges. These include climate change, water, health care, food security, social equity and diversity.

The conference is expected to attract hundreds of people from all over the world, said Ramiro Jordan, professor of electrical and computer engineering at The University of New Mexico and president of the International Federation of Engineering Education Societies (IFEES), which holds the conference.

Although the primary gathering is for deans of engineering, Jordan said the conference will be of interest to those from a wide variety of disciplines, including engineers, students, university leaders, multilateral organizations, foundations, venture capitalists and more.

Most of the event will take place at the Albuquerque Convention Center, but there will be opportunities for the participants of the conference to visit UNM and its various research facilities in the School of Engineering and elsewhere on and near campus. Registration is still open, and the complete agenda is available online. Albuquerque Mayor Tim Keller will give the keynote address at 8 a.m. on Nov. 13. That evening, the winners of the 2018 Airbus GEDC Diversity Award will be announced. One of the finalists competing is the NASA Swarmathon, a project directed by UNM computer science professor Melanie Moses, which takes the concept of swarm robotics and tasks students with using their computing and programming skills to construct and operate a robot to maneuver resources into a collection zone. The other two finalists are from Chile and Hong Kong.

The UNM School of Engineering, in conjunction with the Ibero-American Science and Technology Education Consortium and the Global Innovation Network for Entrepreneurship and Technology, are hosts of the WEEF-GEDC-2018 event.  Strategic partners include AFRL, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratories.