16:43 PM

The Future of Industrial Engineering Education

IE Professor Bopaya Bidanda Delivers Keynote Presentation at IJCIEOM Conference in Lisbon, Portugal


With more options than ever for remote or flipped classrooms, the need for more specialized degrees - and a desire for personalized curricula - engineering education is evolving in a post-Covid world. 

Bopaya Bidanda, the Ernest E. Roth Professor of Industrial Engineering at the University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering, discussed this and more when he delivered the opening keynote at the International Joint Conference on Industrial Engineering and Operations Management (IJCIEOM) in Lisbon, Portugal. 

"In the evolving landscape of engineering education, we need to adapt our educational frameworks to embrace the power of personalization, harness the capabilities of AI, and engage with emerging engineering disciplines,” said Bidanda. 

In his talk, Bidanda explored the future of engineering education and the future of industrial engineering as a discipline. Engineering educators, he predicted, will continue to develop new, relevant curriculum areas, focus on personalized education, and engage students with exciting, team-based experiences. He said that educators will use AI and data analytics to better target students’ educational needs, leading faculty to act more like coaches than lecturers to help students meet their goals.

“Recognizing that each aspiring engineer possesses unique talents, interests, and learning styles, I believe we’ll begin to see a tailoring of educational experiences to unlock their full potential,” said Bidanda. “By fostering individual growth and catering to diverse aspirations, we can nurture a generation of engineers poised to tackle the complex challenges of tomorrow."

In the past year alone, Bidanda has delivered keynote speeches about industrial engineering at conferences in Indonesia, Mexico, and Portugal. The IJCIEOM is an annual joint conference between the Portuguese Industrial Engineering Society and the Brazilian Industrial/Production Engineering Society and began on June 28, 2023. 

A paper coauthored by Pitt IE researchers was also named Best Paper at the IJCIEOM conference. “Using Industrial Engineering to Address Barriers in Blood Collection and Delivery in Low/Middle Income Countries: A Case Study in Kenya” was authored by PhD Student Yiqi Tian, Professor Bopaya Bidanda, Professor Jayant Rajgopal, and Associate Professor Bo Zeng