This Is Purdue

Purdue University

This is Purdue, the official podcast for Purdue University, highlights stories about Boilermakers from across all disciplines, who through research, innovation and determination, have persistently pursued their next giant leap. Hosted by Purdue University alum, Brian Lamb School of Communication graduate, and Indiana native Kate Young, This is Purdue aims to examine all of the incredible accomplishments of Boilermakers and their contributions to the world.Join us every other Thursday as we interview students, faculty, and alumni taking small steps toward their giant leaps, and inspiring others to do the same.

All Episodes

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we’re sharing a new update from our conversation with Xiulin Ruan, professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University.   In an effort to curb global warming, Xiulin and his team created the whitest white acrylic paint - and now, it has earned a Guinness World Records title.  The ultra-white paint, which reflects 98.1% of sunlight and deflects infrared heat, could dramatically reduce or even eliminate the need for air conditioning in some regions. Listen in as we share more details about one of This Is Purdue’s most popular episodes to date! 

Nov 22

26 min 41 sec

In this episode of “This Is Purdue,” we’re talking to Jamie Richards (USN, retired) and Director of Purdue’s Veterans Success Center, Major General Theresa Carter (USAF, Retired) DBA, and Purdue University Trustee, and Ryann Laky, Deputy Joint Operations Center Officer in Charge, Indiana National Guard.  You’ll hear more about how Purdue’s ROTC program prepared both Ryann and Theresa for their military careers, the Veterans Success Center's programs and resources for military-connected students, and the Student Veteran Organization, which serves as a source of knowledge, support, representation and camaraderie. Plus, these three Purdue veterans share what Veterans Day means to them.  

Nov 11

59 min 29 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we’re talking to Purdue men’s basketball head coach Matt Painter.  Listen in as coach Painter discusses recruiting the right fits for the Purdue culture, his special relationship with former Purdue basketball coach Gene Keady, and that 2019 NCAA Elite Eight game. Plus, coach Painter shares his thoughts on why Purdue University is the perfect place for him. With Purdue basketball ranked seventh nationally in the Associated Press preseason men’s basketball poll, the hype around this year’s team is strong. You don’t want to miss this episode! 

Oct 28

39 min 48 sec

In this episode of “This Is Purdue,” we’re welcoming Dr. Jerome Adams, Purdue University’s first executive director of health equity initiatives and professor of practice in the departments of Pharmacy Practice and Public Health. Dr. Adams, the former Indiana state health commissioner and the 20th U.S. surgeon general, discusses his background, how he felt when he got the call to serve as the nation’s doctor, and dives into what health equity means. Listen in as he explains how he intends to help amplify the efforts of the Purdue Extension program to promote health equity throughout Indiana and particularly in rural communities, as well as work specifically with the business community to make the case for health equity as workforce and economic issues. It’s only on Purdue’s official university podcast! 

Oct 14

39 min 21 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we’re talking to Jim Everett, former Purdue University and NFL quarterback, as he reflects on his football career. Listen in as Jim discusses the 1984 trifecta win against Michigan, Ohio State, and Notre Dame in the same season while leading the Boilermakers. Plus, we dig into Jim’s experience as a first-round NFL draft pick, his life after playing professionally, and his recent induction into the Indiana Football Hall of Fame. You don’t want to miss this conversation with a football legend about our Purdue community, his favorite campus memories, and the definition of Boilermaker spirit– found only on the official Purdue University podcast! 

Sep 30

33 min 49 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we’re highlighting the legacy of Purdue University’s Big Bass Drum, also known as The World's Largest Drum™, part of the “All-American” Marching Band, for the past 100 years.  Pamela Nave, Purdue Bands' percussion instructor and Associate Professor of Bands and Orchestras, joins us on the episode to discuss the AAMB community, Neil Armstrong’s support, and the iconic symbol of The World's Largest Drum™.  You’ll also hear from the co-captains of the Big Bass Drum Crew, Brandon Bledsoe and Hannah Pike, on what it takes – both physically and intellectually – to become part of this prestigious crew at Purdue.  Plus, host Kate Young goes behind the scenes at Band Camp and even runs through a few tricks with the crew and the 565-pound drum! It’s only on This Is Purdue, the official university podcast.  

Sep 16

27 min 17 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we’re going behind the scenes at Purdue’s largest Boiler Gold Rush event yet ahead of the start of the 2021 Fall Semester. Listen in as we chat with Craig Johnson, Director of Orientation Programs at Purdue, about how BGR – formerly known as CORN Camp - originated, and how the team continues to evolve this massive event year after year. Plus, we’re attending several events at BGR and talking to students experiencing BGR for the very first time.  If you’re a Purdue alumni, you’re sure to feel some nostalgia during this episode!  

Sep 2

33 min 10 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, we sit down with Purdue University Head Football Coach Jeff Brohm. Listen in as we get to know Coach Brohm on a personal level as he discusses why football truly is ‘all in the family’ for him, with both of his brothers as part of his staff, along with his son as a fixture on the sidelines.  Plus, we dig into the team’s goals for this season, their upcoming historic game at Wrigley Field, and what Coach Brohm finds most rewarding about leading these Boilermakers. And what Purdue tradition is Coach’s favorite? (Hint: It involves snow!) All of this and more on This Is Purdue, the official university podcast. 

Aug 19

31 min 12 sec

In this special edition of This Is Purdue, we’re featuring our journey to find and award the 10 Boilermakers who entered the Old Golden Ticket Vaccination Drawing.  Students who submitted valid proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by July 15 were randomly selected to win the ‘Golden Ticket’ - $9,992 - the equivalent of a year’s undergraduate tuition cost for an in-state Boilermaker since 2013. Listen in as the Purdue University Marketing and Communications team highlights the behind-the-scenes details of pulling off these ultimate surprises from finding students on campus to crossing state lines to getting the parents in on the celebration. You don’t want to miss this episode!  

Aug 5

34 min 24 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, David Boudia, the most decorated Purdue University Diving Olympian, joins us.David shares his gold medal-winning journey, and how adversity has helped shape him into the athlete and person he is today.He also discusses his role in the HBO Sports documentary The Weight of Gold, which explores the mental health challenges that Olympic athletes often face. Hear why David says depression doesn’t discriminate, and why it was important for elite athletes to help shine a light on this.Plus, two Boilermakers will be representing Purdue and USA Diving in Tokyo, and we talk to Brandon Loschiavo, Purdue alum and first-time Olympian, about how he feels to represent the university on this worldwide stage.And what is the next step in David’s career? Find out on This Is Purdue, the official podcast for Purdue University.

Jul 22

27 min 11 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University, Xiulin Ruan, discusses his newest invention – ultra-white paint. In an effort to curb global warming, Xiulin and his team created the whitest white acrylic paint, which reflects 98.1 percent of sunlight and deflects infrared heat, allowing buildings to cool below the surrounding air temperature. Listen in as Xiulin shares his surprise at the amount of attention the invention received, not only in the science and engineering world, but also in the art space. Plus, he breaks down how this paint can help people save money on their electric bills.  

Jul 8

25 min 4 sec

In this episode of This Is Purdue, two of Purdue University’s commencement leaders join us to discuss Purdue’s first outdoor commencement ceremony at Ross-Ade Stadium.  Purdue has been hosting commencement at the iconic Elliott Hall of Music since the 1940s. But – like a lot of things in 2020 – COVID-19 changed that.   Lesa Beals, senior associate registrar, and Chris Pass, senior assistant registrar, share highlights from the 2021 Spring commencement, Purdue’s first in-person ceremony since the pandemic. Hear how they teamed up with other Big Ten universities to pull off a ceremony five times larger than what they normally did at Elliott, and how they prepared for things out of their control (AKA Indiana weather)! Plus, listen in to hear Purdue University President Mitch Daniels’ full 2021 Spring commencement speech.  

Jun 24

26 min 15 sec

In this episode of Purdue University’s official podcast, This is Purdue, we’re joined by a very special guest.   Listen in as Purdue University President Mitch Daniels discusses his decision to fully open the University amidst a pandemic and communicate this to the world back in 2020. Plus, President Daniels talks about what he missed most during the past school year, what he’s looking forward to this Fall (Hint: It involves Purdue Athletics), and his favorite IndyCar driver.  You don't want to miss this episode!  

Jun 10

32 min 54 sec

In this episode of This is Purdue, Shatoya Ward, founding principal at Purdue Polytechnic High School (PPHS) Englewood in Indianapolis, discusses how PPHS is reinventing the traditional high school experience, and her excitement for the school’s first graduating class of seniors.  PPHS – now with three locations – was created to build new K-12 pathways that lead to Purdue, especially for Indiana students who are underserved by traditional high schools and underrepresented in higher education.  You'll also hear from Kayla Owens, senior at PPHS and future Boilermaker. Listen in! 

May 27

37 min 2 sec

Data touches everything. But unlocking its full potential requires a data-fluent generation. Enter The Data Mine, a living-learning community uniting students, faculty, researchers and industry leaders to take the next giant leap in data science at Purdue University. In this episode of This is Purdue, Mark Daniel Ward, director of The Data Mine and a professor of statistics, explains how this initiative was created, the importance of it being a learning-by-doing model, and how the team plans to bring data science to every corner of the state with the Indiana Digital Crossroads initiative.  

May 13

25 min 3 sec

An Associate Professor of Planetary Science at Purdue University, Briony Horgan is also one of the tactical science leads for NASA’s Perseverance Mars Rover. She is examining the Mars landscape through a rover camera called Mastcam-Z - which she helped design for this mission. Talk about a Boilermaker who is taking Giant Leaps!Listen in as Briony discusses what the team of scientists on this mission is looking for on the Red Planet, and what being a part of Purdue’s community means to her.

Apr 29

18 min 15 sec

In this episode of This is Purdue, we’re talking to Dr. Esteban Ramirez, Chief Medical Officer for the Protect Purdue Health Center - the 24/7 virtual health center dedicated to all things COVID-19-related for the Purdue community. Listen in as we discuss how the Protect Purdue initiative assisted in getting 50,000 students, faculty and staff to return to campus safely, and why student culture has played a crucial role in Purdue’s success this year. 

Apr 15

24 min 31 sec

This is Purdue, the official podcast for Purdue University, highlights stories about Boilermakers from across all disciplines, who through research, innovation and determination, have persistently pursued their next giant leap. Hosted by Purdue University alum, Brian Lamb School of Communication graduate, and Indiana native Kate Young, This is Purdue aims to examine all of the incredible accomplishments of Boilermakers and their contributions to the world. Join us every other Thursday as we interview students, faculty, and alumni taking small steps toward their giant leaps, and inspiring others to do the same. Subscribe on your favorite podcast app to never miss an episode and be sure to visit our website at to learn more.   

Apr 8

1 min 25 sec

In this episode, we discover more about Purdue Polytechnic High School and how it is providing a pathway to Purdue for underrepresented minority students.

Mar 15

9 min 22 sec

A cutting-edge, student-run organization, Purdue University’s Solar Racing Club has been building solar cars for 30 years. In time, the group has grown into a thriving, innovative collegiate solar car team, building multiple vehicles and competing in national and international events. Let’s meet some of the group’s standout students who help promote the possibilities of sustainable transportation.The Women in Engineering Program at Purdue University helps girls and women discover their inner engineer. Among its numerous services, the program encourages future engineering students through engaging initiatives like Introduce a Girl to Engineering Day. We spoke with several participants about the importance of this annual gathering that promotes interest in engineering among early high school students.

Mar 1

6 min 2 sec

Active on campus since the early 1960s, Purdue University’s Hockey Club enjoys the enthusiastic support of students, alumni and sponsors. As a Division 3, ACHA collegiate-level organization, the Boilermakers compete within the Indiana Collegiate Hockey Conference. Skilled competitors on the ice, the club’s dedicated members play their home games at either the Fuel Tank in Fishers or Pop Weaver Ice Arena in Indianapolis. They share their passion for the sport with us here. Representing Purdue University both on and off the field of play, student-athletes across all intercollegiate sports rely on student athletic trainers to help prevent and recover from injuries. The athletic training program at Purdue provides only the best in academic coursework and hands-on clinical education, allowing students to acquire exceptional skills that in turn keep Purdue’s teams competing in peak condition.

Jan 28

6 min 27 sec

Purdue University students continue to put their design expertise to groundbreaking use. In this installment of “This Is Purdue,” we talk with Professor John Sullivan from Aeronautics and Astronautics, along with some talented engineering students who recount their travels to the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. While there, they set out to break a speed record using a cutting-edge vehicle they designed and built as a team. Through more than 1,000 student organizations covering diverse interests, Purdue University provides countless ways for students to find their fit on campus. Established in 1982, the Purdue Cycling Club attracts both undergraduate and graduate students who have a passion for cycling. From group rides to racing opportunities, riders at all skill levels enjoy activities connecting them with other cyclists on campus.

Jan 18

8 min 54 sec

Dedicated in 2008, the 8-foot-tall “Unfinished Block P” sculpture on Purdue University’s campus serves as a permanent reminder that one’s educational journey never ends – that learning, in essence, is a lifelong process. The bronze sculpture, cast to appear as if it were carved out of stone, was a collaborative effort between artists Rita and Rick Hadley, University officials and members of the Iron Key honorary that works anonymously each year on a service project benefiting Purdue. We take a closer look at this beloved work of art here. By taking a journey back in time, Purdue University’s Medieval Society helps the campus community explore both the society and culture of the Middle Ages — all accomplished through festive activities that are both fun and enlightening. We spoke with some of the group’s members to discover more about the Medieval Society’s timeless appeal for Purdue and its students.

Jan 4

7 min 58 sec

The Purdue University campus is home to a diverse collection of sculptures — one that includes statues of individuals who have inspired students to commissioned pieces by internationally renowned artists. In this edition of “This Is Purdue,” we turn the spotlight on several of these noteworthy landmarks — from the Bell Tower and Continuum to a student-favorite fountain, a statue honoring a legendary astronaut, and the beloved bronze Boilermaker that greets loyal fans to Purdue athletic competitions. In 2016 Purdue University unveiled the final sculpture designed by the late Nina Hole. The internationally acclaimed artist was known for her outdoor firing technique, which allowed her to transform raw clay into a finished piece of art entirely on site. The finished, life-size clay structure housed at Purdue was modeled to look like a church in the Danish artist’s hometown — a stunning piece introduced to the campus community through performative elements.

Dec 2020

12 min 15 sec

A grand tradition at Purdue University, the PMO Christmas Show ushers in each holiday season through the gift of song. Due to safety concerns surrounding COVID-19, this year’s 87th annual show, aptly titled “A Different Kind of Christmas,” takes place virtually December 19th and will showcase your favorite PMO musical ensembles. William Griffel, the Albert P. Stewart Director of Purdue Musical Organizations, joins us for a behind-the-scenes look at this free virtual event. No holiday season would be complete without a telling of Charles Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” Thanks to Chicago’s world-renowned interdisciplinary performance collective Manual Cinema, the Purdue family can purchase tickets for a live virtual adaptation running December 4th through 13th. We asked Todd Wetzel, executive director of Purdue Convocations, about this festive, visually inventive event for all ages.

Dec 2020

7 min 58 sec

This is not your parents’ Purdue. When it comes to the way people learn, Purdue continues to push the boundaries and define the standard. Purdue’s 164-thousand-square-foot Wilmeth Active Learning Center is much more than another beautiful red-brick building on campus. A decade in the planning, its 2017 opening represented a transformation in the way Purdue students learn. Another massive structure that has upped the Boilermakers’ game — literally — is Purdue’s state-of-the-art Football Performance Complex. This sprawling, three-story structure also opened in 2017, amazing and delighting Boilermaker football recruits, players and coaches.

Nov 2020

12 min 51 sec

The latest edition of “This Is Purdue” highlights two University celebrations. We begin our podcast with details regarding the various festivities surrounding Giant Leaps at Home – Purdue’s virtual 2020 Homecoming. We then spotlight the 25th birthday of our beloved Purdue Bell Tower with on-campus events that took place this fall. Please note: Bruce Baker will unfortunately not be able to perform during the Virtual Homecoming. We apologize for any inconvenience.

Nov 2020

9 min 36 sec

Discover more about the Purdue Hurling Club and the Purdue Twirling Team.

Oct 2020

9 min 59 sec

In this episode, we discover more about the Purdue All-American Marching Band and the Reamer Club. Listen in!

Oct 2020

10 min 9 sec

In this episode, you'll hear about the Purdue CoRec and Sports Nutrition.

Sep 2020

12 min 15 sec

In this episode we will learn more about Purdue Professors Michele Buzon and Randy Roberts.These stories originally aired as part of the Boiler Bytes series.

Sep 2020

16 min 20 sec

In this episode we will learn more about the Founding of Purdue and the Wooden Jersey.These stories originally aired as part of the Boiler Bytes series.

Aug 2020

17 min 17 sec

In this episode, we will discover more about the Purdue Varsity Glee Club and Purdue’s Center for Global Soundscapes.

Aug 2020

15 min 54 sec

On this episode of This is Purdue​, you will hear about two aviation legends from the Purdue family, Neil Armstrong and Amelia Earhart.

Jul 2020

27 min 39 sec

Today on This is Purdue you will hear about two nostalgic parts of Purdue’s history. First you will learn about Purdue’s most famous celebrity. This honor goes to Purdue’s “unofficial mascot”, Purdue Pete! This segment reveals some memories of multiple alumni that wore the Purdue Pete costume over the years. Dr. John Note was one of the first people to wear the Purdue Pete costume and is the first guest on today’s episode. The host explains how “Arthur Evans’ design is a powerful homage to Boilermaker craftsmen. Sporting a muscular physique, hard hat, and a mallet for hammering steel- this iconic logo was intended to signify strength and determination.”

Jul 2020

21 min 5 sec

Jonathon Day, associate professor of hospitality and tourism management, is studying how to strike a balance for making tourism sustainable for future generations. Day says that sustainable tourism is about looking after economics, culture and environment to benefit communities.

Jun 2020

12 min 56 sec

Today on ​This is Purdue,​ Olivea McCollins talks to ​Ananth Iyer​ and ​Ellen Kossek​ about situations that are facing many of us today. Anath Iyer is the Susan Bulkeley Butler Chair in Operations Management at the Krannert School of Management​ and Ellen Kossek is the Basil S. Turner Professor at Purdue University's Krannert School of Management.

Jun 2020

22 min 35 sec

A Purdue entomologist talks about why we need mosquitoes even though most of us would prefer they go away ... and how to keep them from biting us during the summer months. And, a food science expert answers questions about whether we can trust the fresh fruits and vegetables in our produce section during the COVID-19 pandemic.

May 2020

16 min 28 sec

In this episode, we talk data science. A first-year student explains how he’s sharing baseball statistics online and connecting with other sports-starved fans while the COVID-19 pandemic puts organized sports on hold. We also highlight the Integrative Data Science Initiative.

May 2020

15 min 12 sec

We highlight a Purdue alumnus who has received national recognition for his impact as a science teacher. Also, a Purdue alumna shares how she moved science research forward on national and global scales.

Apr 2020

20 min 3 sec

We highlight a Purdue biochemistry professor and his team's work to fight against the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, a father and son team share how their startup can help elderly patients suffering from hip fractures.

Apr 2020

19 min 12 sec

A Purdue staff member passionately champions women’s contributions to engineering and we highlight a Purdue alumnus who co-created a flight communication training app.

Mar 2020

18 min 52 sec

Can FDA-approved drugs treat antibiotic-resistant infections? We talk with a Purdue professor whose work is aimed at answering that question, and we learn about the important cancer-fighting work of the Purdue Center for Cancer Research from the center's director.

Mar 2020

19 min 12 sec

A Purdue professor shares his fascination with technology in sports, and we celebrate the Purdue Black Cultural Center, which marked its 50th anniversary in 2019.

Feb 2020

22 min 36 sec

Student athletes are becoming servant leaders thanks to a Purdue leadership advisor, and a PhD student in agronomy is determined to focus on her passions for agronomy and basketball instead of her disability.

Feb 2020

26 min 27 sec

A Purdue professor's invention is helping Parkinson's patients communicate, and a therapy in development in a Purdue lab could be a breakthrough for children stricken with Niemann-Pick disease type C, a rare, fatal disease.

Jan 2020

25 min 24 sec