Innovation Hub Leadership

Dr. Edward Berger

Dr. Edward Berger (he/him) is the Director of the Innovation Hub, and he also serves as the Inaugural Associate Vice Provost for Learning Innovation. He joined Purdue in 2014 after previously working at the University of Cincinnati (1996-2004) and the University of Virginia (2005-2014). He is a Professor of Engineering Education and Mechanical Engineering, as well as the Executive Director of the Mechanical Engineering Education Research Center at Purdue (MEERCat Purdue), a research center focused on teaching and learning in an ME context, academic cultures and cultural change, and holistic student success. He spent about 18 months as a program director at NSF (Division of Engineering Education and Centers, Directorate for Engineering) in 2019-2020. In Fall 2021, he started a two-year term as the faculty representative to the Indiana Commission for Higher Education.

Beth Fines

Beth Fines (she/her) serves as the Managing Director of the Innovation Hub. In this role, she will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of projects and fellowships funded by the Innovation Hub, all of which support the university’s Transformative Education 2.0 initiative. She also will play a central role in building partnerships across campus, establishing strategies for future Hub investments, and supporting its financial sustainability. Fines comes to Purdue University with nearly two decades of professional experience designing, implementing and scaling high-impact undergraduate programs and initiatives. She most recently served as the Program Director for the Second-year Transformational Experience Program & Strategic Student Initiatives at Ohio State University, where she collaborated with faculty and staff across campus to increase student success and reduce barriers to engagement in experiential learning opportunities.

Rebecca Martinez

Rebecca Martinez serves as the Innovation Hub’s Graduate Research Assistant. She is a cultural anthropologist with deep interest in interdisciplinary research, teaching, and learning. She is a PhD student, soon to be candidate, and her research looks at approaches to collaborative research and education. With extensive experience spanning diverse, mission-driven initiatives, Rebecca has engaged in community-based projects to refugee resettlement work in Missouri, as well as contributing to international health and education initiatives in Liberia. Since 2021, she has been an active participant in two university-based lab spaces, both of which embrace novel approaches to teaching, learning, and social change. She has been supported by NSF, the Knox Fellowship, and Millipore Sigma’s Leaders of Color program. Outside her academic pursuits, she is a leader of Anthropology Graduate Student Organization and a non-profit supporting educational and health projects in Liberia.

Rebecca’s current work represents a synthesis of her broad interests, all oriented toward the exploration of the possibilities within institution such as higher education. Her commitment to addressing barriers and fostering innovation for social change shines through in her professional journey.