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Purdue for Life Foundation

Back to Class Sessions

All Back to Class sessions are free.

Session One // 9:15–10 am
Prospectus for the US Economy in 2024

James Bullard, Samuel R. Allen Dean, Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. School of Business

Will interest rates continue rising in 2024? Is the economy headed for a recession? Learn from the inaugural Mitchell E. Daniels, Jr. School of Business dean, Jim Bullard. Join the longest-serving sitting president of Federal Reserve Banks and one of the nation’s foremost economists and respected scholar-leaders in a wide-ranging talk that spans current US monetary policy, inflation, and macroeconomic analysis.
What’s Trust Got to Do With it? Closing the Loop Between Man and Machine

Neera Jain, Associate Professor, School of Mechanical Engineering

There is growing interest in the potential impact of automation, and more broadly AI, that is truly collaborative with humans. Realizing this impact, though, rests on addressing the fundamental challenge of designing AI with the emotional intelligence to be aware of and responsive to humans to mitigate the potentially catastrophic consequences of human over-trust or mistrust in the system. This class will provide an introduction to the fundamentals of human trust in AI and a glimpse into a future in which AI and autonomous systems are truly improving our quality of life. Our own research leverages an interdisciplinary approach, drawing on cognitive psychology, human factors, dynamical systems, control theory, and machine learning, to imbue machines with human cognitive models and algorithms that can enable machines to adapt their interactions to different users.
Deepening Purdue’s Land-Grant Mission: An Update on Online Education

Frank Dooley, Chancellor, Purdue Global
Dimitrios Peroulis, Senior Vice President for Purdue University Online and Reilly Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering

Innovative new approaches to online education allow Purdue to address emerging industry workforce opportunities. With Purdue University Online and Purdue Global, Purdue is uniquely positioned to meet a wider set of educational and workforce needs than other universities. Going beyond traditional degree routes, we also share the different student personas and how Purdue empowers them to succeed.
Elevating Well-Being: The Future of Wellness at Purdue

Beth McCuskey, Vice Provost for Student Life
Mike Warren, Director, Recreation & Wellness

Join us for an engaging exploration of the future of well-being in higher education with a special focus on Purdue’s innovative approach to enhancing student wellness. At Purdue Recreation & Wellness (RecWell), we’re taking significant steps to address the evolving needs of our students in a rapidly changing academic landscape. In this presentation, we will unveil RecWell’s Outdoor Master Plan, a visionary blueprint that promises to impact student well-being. Discover the “why” behind this crucial initiative as we delve into the pressing need for holistic well-being support on campus. Explore “how” RecWell is rising to the occasion, not only in promoting physical health but also in nurturing mental health, fostering social connections, and creating a thriving community.
Session Two // 10:15–11 am
Water: Foundational to Future Global Food Security

Jeffrey J. Volenec, Professor and Interim Head, Department of Agronomy
Sylvie M. Brouder, Professor of Agronomy, Wickersham Chair of Excellence in Agricultural Research, and Director of Purdue’s Center for Global Food Security

Everyone knows that plants need water to grow, but the vast amounts of fresh water required for food production often go unnoticed by consumers. With climate change, water scarcity is becoming more commonplace; 38 states are currently (as of mid-September 2023) experiencing Moderate Drought (D1) or worse encompassing nearly 300 million acres of major cropland. The growing tension between agricultural water use and that used by cities or for recreation is making the headlines of major news outlets on a weekly basis. We will discuss why crops require so much water, and what research is underway to enhance water-use efficiency in agriculture and global food security.
Giant Leaps of Discovery with the James Webb Space Telescope

Danny Milisavljevic, Associate Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope is helping to answer profound questions about our place in the universe: Are we alone? What did the first stars and galaxies look like? This class highlights early results from Webb and emphasizes Purdue’s internationally recognized role in exploring uncharted frontiers of space and time.
Making Her Mark as First Lady

YingKei Hui, First Lady of Purdue University

Join Dr. Hui, also known as Kei, as she discusses her efforts to foster local community collaboration and serve as an advocate for children’s well-being, preventive health care, and opportunities to support all Purdue families. The session will be moderated by April Headdy, executive director, President’s Council.
Session Three // 11:15 am–Noon
Health of the Force: Linking Human Health With National Defense

Shelley MacDermid Wadsworth, Distinguished Professor, Department of Human Development and Family Science
Aaron Bowman, Interim Dean, College of Health and Human Sciences

Purdue is pursuing a large national security agenda that currently focuses on contributing to technological advances. Humans and their health are a vital component of our national defense. In this class, attendees will learn about the role of healthy humans in national defense, the variety of issues that relate to health of the forces, and research underway at Purdue that addresses these issues.
Antimicrobial Resistance: The Greatest One-Health Challenge

Sanjeev K. Narayanan, Professor and Head, Department of Comparative Pathobiology
Kenitra Hendrix, Director, Animal Disease Diagnostic Laboratory

Incidence of multidrug-resistant infections causing human and animal illness, death, and the resulting economic perils are on a rise. Prudent use of antibiotics by preventing the overuse and misuse of antibiotics requires collaboration between medical professionals, scientists in diverse fields, the pharmaceutical industry, and the public. Education and committed efforts are critical.
The Art of Legacy Building: Balancing Financial Security and Family Harmony

Marcus Knotts, Senior Associate Vice President for Planned Giving, Purdue for Life Foundation

In addition to practical advice about wills, trusts, asset protection, and tax minimization, this seminar will also discuss the importance of clear communication within the family. Going beyond the technical aspects of estate planning, we will delve into the emotional and personal elements of leaving a meaningful legacy and discuss how values, aspirations, and life experiences can shape the legacy we wish to pass on.