Louisiana Tech announces new partnership with KEEN

May 1, 2024 | Engineering and Science, Partnerships

Beginning this May, Louisiana Tech University’s strong tradition of immersive, entrepreneurial engineering education will receive a new boost through the Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN). The university — in an initiative spearheaded by its College of Engineering and Science (COES) —  has joined KEEN’s nearly 70 member partnership.

The COES is dedicated to providing a distinctive learning experience for its engineering and technology majors. With signature programs like Living with the Lab, Living with Cyber, and Research and Design Conferences, the COES is constantly looking for new ways to broaden its commitment to hands-on collaborative learning to prepare students for leadership roles in the workforce.

Through this partnership, Louisiana Tech and the COES hope to continue their streak of finding new and creative ways to engage students, both at the university and in the greater community. The university was the first in the nation to introduce a four-year cyber engineering degree, the first in the state to offer a biomedical engineering program, and was among the first universities to join the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenge Scholars Program and offer Cyber Discovery Camps to high school students.

The integration with KEEN will further these educational initiatives, marking a significant step in Louisiana Tech’s mission to merge traditional educational models with cutting-edge, market-driven work. This partnership places Louisiana Tech among only two institutions in the state aligned with KEEN.

“Louisiana Tech has long been the school of choice for top students seeking innovative engineering programs,” said Dr. Jim Henderson, president of Louisiana Tech University. “Partnering with KEEN will present even more opportunities for expanded experiential learning to develop engineers prepared to contribute in meaningful ways upon graduation.”

Dr. Collin Wick, dean of the College of Engineering and Science, echoed Henderson’s sentiments.

“With the help of KEEN, we continue to expand our dynamic educational model to become a destination university for Engineering and Science in the region and beyond,” he said. “The efforts of Dr. Krystal Cruse and Dr. Kelly Crittenden in securing the KEEN partnership reinforce our commitment to education that reaches beyond traditional classroom boundaries to cultivate an entrepreneurial spirit within our students.”

“We are thrilled to welcome Louisiana Tech University to KEEN,” A. L. Ranen McLanahan, program director of The Kern Family Foundation, said. “Their innovative first-year engineering program, Living with the Lab, exemplifies the entrepreneurial spirit right at the outset of the student journey and will provide a foundation to couple additional high-impact experiences throughout the rest of the curriculum, all aimed at graduating students with an entrepreneurial mindset. Joining KEEN connects them to a network of over 60 partners working toward the same goal. We look forward to the fresh perspectives and collaborative energy Louisiana Tech will bring to our community.”

About Louisiana Tech University’s College of Engineering and Science:

Located in Ruston, Louisiana, the College of Engineering and Science (COES) at Louisiana Tech University is known for rigorous academics, innovative research, and producing graduates prepared to address challenges and become leaders in the workforce. The COES promotes an integration of traditional learning with hands-on, project-based experiences, equipping students for a rapidly evolving technological landscape.

About KEEN:

The Kern Entrepreneurial Engineering Network (KEEN) is a collaboration of almost 70 universities nationwide that focuses on fostering the entrepreneurial mindset among engineering students so they can create personal, economic, and societal value through a lifetime of meaningful work.

For more information about Louisiana Tech’s role with KEEN, please visit the university’s partner page on the KEEN website.