UA Engineering Student Selected for Eisenhower Fellowship

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The Federal Highway Administration recently awarded an Eisenhower Grant for Research Fellowship to Owen Killeen, a University of Alabama senior in civil engineering, as part of the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program.

Killeen, a native of Norwich Conn., will spend the summer working at the Federal Highway Administration’s Turner-Fairbank Highway Research Center in McLean, Va., home to more than 20 laboratories, data centers and support facilities that conduct applied and exploratory advanced research in vehicle-highway interaction, nanotechnology and a host of transportation research in safety, pavements, highway structures and bridges, human-centered systems, operations and intelligent transportation systems as well as materials.

In collaboration with the Federal Highway Administration, UA and the University of Wyoming, Killeen will work on improving the testing process that determines how certain aggregates react with cement.

“Cement causes expansion, leading to durability issues and loss of service life of structures used in our everyday lives,” Killeen said. “These include bridges, buildings, schools, foundations and many more.”

His assignments include lab work and writing a formal research paper, which he will present in January at the 2014 Transportation Research Board Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Established by the Intermodal Surface Transportation Efficiency Act in 1991, the Eisenhower Fellowship seeks to expand the number of qualified engineers in the transportation workforce. Through the program, the Federal Highway Administration allows undergraduate and graduate students to spend time at the U.S. Department of Transportation to participate in research, development and technology transfer activities. About 150 to 200 Eisenhower Transportation Fellowships are awarded each year.

In 1837, The University of Alabama became one of the first five universities in the nation to offer engineering classes. Today, UA’s fully accredited College of Engineering has more than 3,900 students and more than 110 faculty. In the last eight years, students in the College have been named USA Today All-USA College Academic Team members, Goldwater, Hollings, Mitchell, Portz and Truman scholars.


Adam Jones, engineering public relations, 205/348-6444,; Judah Martin, engineering student writer,