Purdue alumnus named Polytechnic Institute dean | Campus

Purdue officials named Daniel Castro-Lacouture the new dean of the Polytechnic Institute, effective June 1.

Purdue alumnus Castro-Lacouture is a building construction professor and the executive director of the occupational safety and health master’s program at Georgia Institute of Technology, according to the press release.

“Dr. Castro-Lacouture is an outstanding choice to lead the Polytechnic Institute as we continue to rethink and redesign how students can master the competencies required in our evolving innovation marketplace,” Purdue President Mitch Daniels said. “I know the college and all of its students will benefit from their new dean’s experience and energy.”

At Georgia Tech, Castro-Lacouture was the chair of the School of Building Construction for over 11 years, according to the release. He helped increased the number and diversity of faculty and create six academic programs, including three graduate programs, as chair.

The Polytechnic Institute had been searching for a new dean since May when the previous dean, Gary Bertoline, accepted a position as the senior vice president for Purdue Online.

Castro-Lacouture got his start in Universidad de Los Andes, Colombia, then earning an MSc in construction management at the University of Reading in the United Kingdom, according to the release, before coming to Purdue for his PhD in civil engineering. He was also a teaching assistant and staff resident at Hillenbrand Hall while at Purdue.

“The current situation and outlook of the Polytechnic Institute, featuring talented and caring people, state-of-the-art facilities, and an inspiring mission, convinced me that it was the right time to become the next dean,” he said. “I am truly grateful for this opportunity, as I could not wish for a better return to Purdue to build upon fond memories of a great education and an exceptional sense of community.”

Castro-Lacouture taught courses at Georgia Tech in safety and health research leadership culture, capstone projects and zero-energy housing, the release reads. His research focuses on the feasibility of multi-scale application of digital technologies for preconstruction and construction processes.

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