Lance R. Collins

Lance Collins

Professor Lance R. Collins is the inaugural vice president and executive director of the Virginia Tech Innovation Campus. Collins’ appointment culminated an international search for the leader of the Innovation Campus, which was announced by the university as part of the state’s successful effort to attract Amazon’s HQ2 to Northern Virginia.

Collins joined Virginia Tech in August 2020 from Cornell University where he served as the Joseph Silbert Dean of Engineering for 10 years. He was also part of the leadership team that successfully bid to partner with New York City to build Cornell Tech, which opened its Roosevelt Island campus in 2017. As the engineering dean at Cornell, Collins led one of the largest capital campaigns in the college’s history. He also accelerated efforts to diversify the college’s faculty and student body: During his tenure, the proportion of underrepresented minority students increased from 8 to 19 percent and the undergraduate female enrollment from 33 to 50 percent. Collins joined Cornell in 2002, following 11 years as Assistant Professor, Associate Professor, and Professor of Chemical Engineering at Pennsylvania State University.

Professor Collins’ research interests are on the application of direct numerical simulation to a broad range of turbulent processes. Areas of current interest include: (i) turbulent coagulation of aerosol particles; (ii) experimental and numerical evaluation of Lagrangian statistics in turbulent flows; (iii) mixing and chemical reaction in turbulent flames; (iv) turbulent breakup of microstructures (e.g., drops, polymers and red blood cells); (v) drag reduction due to polymer additives. A unifying theme is the importance of fine-scale (micro-turbulence) transport to these phenomena.

BSE (Chemical Engineering), Princeton University, 1981
MS (Chemical Engineering), University of Pennsylvania, 1983
Ph.D. (Chemical Engineering), University of Pennsylvania, 1987