WPI sign in the snow

2023 Year in Review: Media Coverage

In 2023, WPI made headlines for its groundbreaking research, contributions that spanned various fields, and expertise that demonstrated the institution's commitment to academic excellence and its vital role in addressing real-world challenges. This global media recognition highlights our prowess in fostering innovation and pushing the boundaries of knowledge. Here’s a look back at some of the stories featuring our student, faculty, and staff success and accomplishments.
List of Major Media Outlets That Covered WPI in 2023

Agence France-Presse (AFP) 
The Associated Press
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution 
The Baltimore Sun 
The Boston Globe 
Boston Herald 
Boston 25 News 
CBS Boston 
The Charlotte Observer 
Chicago Sun-Times 
Chicago Tribune 
The Chronicle of Higher Education
The Denver Post 
Fort Worth Star-Telegram 
Higher Ed Dive 
The Hill
Houston Chronicle 
The Huffington Post
Inside Higher Ed 
The Los Angeles Times
NBC 10 Boston 
New York Daily News 
The Philadelphia Inquirer
The San Diego Union-Tribune
Science Robotics 
The Seattle Times 
SFGate.com (San Francisco) 
St. Louis Post-Dispatch 
USA Today 
The Washington Post
Yahoo! News 



biotech lab

From breakthroughs in cleaning up the ocean, to a uniquely inspired wound dressing, to creating a buzz with a miniature flying robot, news about WPI research was watched, read, and heard throughout the world over the past 12 months.


WGBH and NBC10 spoke with chemical engineering professor Michael Timko about his research with professor Nikolaos Kazantzis to turn plastic into fuel to improve ocean cleanup. (11/1/2023, 10/6/2023)

AI Business asked computer science professor Erin Solovey for insight as to how artificial intelligence is being used in neuroscience and its potential future applications. (10/12/2023)

Yahoo! News highlighted Yan Wang, William B. Smith Professor of Mechanical Engineering, for his research into  robust performance potential for recycled lithium-ion batteries. This year Wang was also honored with an American Innovator Award by the Bayh-Dole Coalition for his lab’s work developing a groundbreaking technique to recycle lithium-ion batteries. (10/26/2023)


robo bee

Dronelife reported on robotics engineering professor Nitin Sanket’s effort to develop miniature autonomous drones that could offset declining pollinator populations. (11/3/2023) 

Spectrum News 1 interviewed Jeanine Coburn, assistant professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering, about her $600,000 National Science Foundation CAREER Award to develop a transparent wound dressing that traces its origins to her homemade kombucha. (2/22/2023)

CBS Boston talked with Shichao Liu, professor of civil, environmental, and architectural engineering, about his research on heat and learning after debate surfaced as to whether to cancel school during a heat wave. The Washington Post also talked with him about his expertise on thermostat settings. The interview was cited in an MSN article. (9/8/2023, 7/10/2023, 7/18/2023)

CBS Boston spoke with Erin Ottmar, professor of social science and policy studies, about her $668,000 National Science Foundation grant to study how the use of color and spacing could help students learn algebra more easily.  (9/1/2023)

WPI’s focus on real-world problems helped reporters from around the globe put news into focus this year. Faculty members offered their expertise on major events that occurred in 2023 including the growth of ChatGPT, the United Auto Workers Strike, and devastating wildfires in both Maui and Canada.

Reuters spoke with fire protection engineering professors Albert Simeoni and James Urban for a fact-checking article dispelling conspiracy theories about why some trees survived the massive Maui wildfire. (8/22/2023)

AFP talked with Simeoni about speculation surrounding the cause of the deadly Maui fire. (8/15/2023)



The Los Angeles Times interviewed James Urban about the dangerous combination of drought and high winds that factored into the fire, and Urban talked about how flying embers can spread. (8/11/23)

The Associated Press spoke with Mike Ahern about the power lines in the Maui Fire. (8/27/2023)

WPI experts were also sources in the Boston Herald about wildfire smoke that
descended from Canada. (6/28/2023)

Artificial Intelligence:
 WBUR hosted Yunus Telliel, assistant professor of anthropology and rhetoric, on a roundtable about ethics in artificial intelligence. (9/6/2023)  

The Boston Globe quoted Gillian Smith, associate professor and director of Interactive Media & Game Development, in a story about how educators are coming to grips with artificial intelligence in the classroom. (4/3/2023)


Gillian Smith points to computer screen

Consumer Affairs

NECN and WCVB-TV spoke with Joseph Sarkis, professor of management in The Business School, about how consumers may be affected by the expanding United Auto Workers strike. (9/27/2023, 9/22/2023)

USA Today talked with Farnoush Reshadi, professor of marketing, about her expertise on personal finance for an article on how to keep a budget during the holiday season and how to be a better gift giver. (11/25/2023) 


man at computer holding money

AFP talked with associate professor Purvi Shah in The Business School about how major brands cash in on nostalgia with reboots of everything from Furby dolls to McDonald’s Grimace. (8/19/2023)

The Huffington Post interviewed David Spanagel, associate professor of humanities and arts, for a story that lent important historical context to the new movie about H. Robert Oppenheimer. (7/20/2023)

Public Safety:
WBZ-TV interviewed civil, environmental, & architectural engineering professor Mingjiang Tao for a story on why so many roads were swallowed by sinkholes in recent devastating flooding. (9/12/2023)

The Boston Globe quoted fire protection engineering professor Milosh Puchovsky in two stories about the importance of standpipes, a type of fire suppression equipment. 

Boston25 News interviewed him about the dangers of electric-vehicle fires. (9/17/2023,7/13/2023, 10/26/2023) 


2023 grad cap


WPI’s efforts in critical areas such as student support and wellness, diversifying STEM, and continued excellence in research and learning opportunities were highlighted by top-tier higher education, industry, and national news outlets. 

Inside Higher Ed interviewed Rachael Heard, director of academic programming and student transitions, about her experience making higher education more accessible for students. (11/13/2023)

Higher Ed Dive published an op-ed by Paul Reilly, assistant dean of student success, about how revamping incoming students’ experience can help them academically and socially. (10/23/2023) 


FIRST students

NPR spoke with Jennifer Cluett, Dean of Admissions, about the experiences of students who participate in high school robotics competitions. (10/7/2023) 

Banking Dive interviewed Kwamie Dunbar, associate professor at The Business School, about the new bachelor's and master's fintech degrees. (9/6/2023) 

Nature talked with former Provost Wole Soboyejo about the evolution of tenure and WPI’s innovative teaching to tenure track program. (8/7/2023)

Inside Higher Ed talked with Philip Clay, senior vice president  for student affairs and enrollment management, about WPI’s trustee mentorship program. (6/7/2023)

The Chronicle of Higher Education featured quotes from Mimi Sheller, Dean of the Global School, and associate dean Kent Rismiller about how WPI has expanded student access to study-abroad programs. (5/17/2023)

WBUR interviewed Jean King, Peterson Family Dean of Arts and Sciences, about diversifying STEM. (5/3/2023)


CWB entrance

WBUR featured Debora Jackson, dean of The Business School, on a panel about the experience and perspective of Black women in higher ed. (3/17/2023)

NBC10 covered the opening of the new Center for Well-Being. (3/28/2023)

WPI’s forward-thinking researchers and students shared their thoughts about climate change, novel recycling and biomanufacturing ideas, and the future of medicine; two Nobel Prize winners spoke with the media while at WPI for the 2023 Nature conference.    

The Boston Globe included mention of the WPI contingent heading to COP28, the annual climate summit, in Dubai. Spectrum News 1 interviewed the students. (11/29/2023). 


Students who went to COP28

In related news, The Boston Globe  interviewed Mimi Sheller, Dean of The Global School, about the concerns of some island states and developing nations about the final agreement reached at the COP 28 climate summit. (12/13/2023) 

The Hill featured an op-ed by Yan Wang, William B. Smith Professor of Mechanical Engineering, about the future of battery recycling. (3/16/2023)

The Worcester Business Journal featured WPI in an article about positioning the Worcester region as a biomanufacturing hub. (10/30/2023)

Nautilus talked with Dmitry Korkin, Harold L. Jurist ’61 and Heather E. Jurist Dean’s Professor of Computer Science, about his role in developing a “periodic table” of structural elements that make up the COVID-19 virus, and how it led a Scottish artist to create a sculpture of the virus, first displayed at the Oxford Museum of Natural History. (3/10/2023)

Spectrum News 1 interviewed Nobel laureate Katalin Kariko, whose research paved the way for the development of the COVID vaccine. Kariko was at WPI as part of a Nature conference. (10/18/2023)