Skip to main content
May 5, 2020

A message from MS&E department chair Sue Babcock

Written By: Webmanager

Hello alumni, donors, and friends of MS&E,

 Sue Babcock
Sue Babcock

It goes without saying that none of us could have imagined an international pandemic to be part of our spring semester. Nearly all of us are now carrying out our teaching, research, and service work remotely. As we do with our students and colleagues, we want to connect with you, too, electronically.

I am so proud of our students, staff members and faculty. Our Badger MS&E community has displayed inspirational resilience and adaptability in the face of challenges presented by the pandemic. As a result, 36 undergraduate students will receive their Bachelor of Science in Materials Science and Engineering in a matter of days. These students will be recognized in online celebrations on May 9, 2020, and will be invited to attend the 2021 College of Engineering Commencement Ceremony. An MS&E Class of 2020 reunion event is even being planned for May of 2021.

To assure that all of our undergraduate and graduate students continued to learn and make progress toward earning their degrees, our faculty, with impressive speed, collaboration, and creativity, converted all of our spring classes to an online format. Research groups quickly adapted to meeting via various web-based formats. A group of faculty members even arranged a series of virtual seminars to help keep our research students connected and engaged. Unfortunately, we didn’t figure out how to provide our trademark seminar cookies virtually, but participation was strong nevertheless!

As part of a larger UW-Madison campus effort, the College of Engineering collected roughly 1,000 pounds of personal protective equipment, hand sanitizer, and disinfectant wipes from labs to send to the nearby UW Hospital to support efforts in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. Items will also be used by other UW Health facilities and campus labs conducting research on the virus. The tremendous efforts put forth by not only members of the department, but also the College and the University as a whole make me proud to be a Badger.

It was not the spring semester we envisioned, but the whole Badger MS&E and College of Engineering community stepped up to support our students as they prepare for their futures and our local, state, and world partners as they fight to contain the virus. From all of us at the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, thank you for your support in helping us do so.

We hope you, your families, and your friends are all well and we wish you wellness and happiness in the time ahead.

Sue Babcock, Professor and Department Chair