UA to Host Civil Engineering Symposium

TUSCALOOSA, Ala. — The University of Alabama department of civil, construction and environmental engineering will host the Garry Neil Drummond symposium Aug. 19-20 in the South Engineering Research Center on campus to discuss the future of the field.

Titled “Defining the Future of Civil Engineering through Collaborative Research,” the symposium includes a panel discussion among eight nationally-recognized civil engineering researchers at 1 p.m. Aug. 19 in SERC 1013. Speakers will also give brief presentations on their research on the morning of Aug. 20 in SERC.

The University of Alabama recently completed the final building of four engineering and science facilities focused on interdisciplinary research and teaching. Through shared space, the buildings promote collaboration among faculty in the College of Engineering and UA.

“Having these eight scholars on campus at once is a unique opportunity for our faculty and students to explore how we can fully utilize our many new facilities to positively affect our profession’s future and the state’s economy,” said Dr. Ken Fridley, head of the civil, construction and environmental engineering department.

Speakers will each give a brief presentation and participate in panel discussions designed to inform students and faculty on key issues in their industry. Speakers are from the areas of structural engineering and materials, construction engineering and management, transportation engineering and planning along with environmental and water resources.

The distinguished engineering research professors invited to speak at the symposium include

  • Dr. Burcu Akinci, professor of civil and environmental engineering at Carnegie Mellon University and co-director of Pennsylvania Smarter Infrastructure Incubator.
  • Dr. Adjo A. Amekudzi, professor of civil and environmental engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Dr. Serji Amirkhanian, director of research and development at Phoenix Industries
  • Dr. R. Balaji, professor of civil, environmental and architectural engineering at the University of Colorado
  • Dr. Genda Chen, associate director of the Mid-America Transportation Research Center at the Missouri University of Science and Technology
  • Dr. Michael E. Kreger, professor of civil engineering at Purdue University
  • Dr. Venkat Lakshmi, professor of earth and ocean sciences at the University of South Carolina
  • Dr. Gustavo Parra-Montesinos, C.K. Wang professor of structural engineering at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Those planning to attend the symposium are asked to RSVP the department of civil, construction and environmental engineering at 205/348-6550.

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,