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Whitacre College of Engineering Today
Faculty Recognitions
Staff Recognitions
Grants and Contracts
Student Accomplishments
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Dr. Pamela Eibeck, Dean of the Whitacre College of Engineering and Professor of Mechanical Engineering, has been selected as the 24th President of University of the Pacific. She will become Pacific’s first female president and the sixth since the university moved to Stockton in 1924.

Eibeck will begin her appointment at Pacific on July 1, 2009. She succeeds President Donald V. DeRosa, who will retire on June 30 after a 14-year tenure. She will remain here at Texas Tech until mid-June.

"It is an honor and a privilege to be asked to serve as the next president of University of the Pacific," said Eibeck. "Serving as dean of engineering has been a tremendous opportunity. Our accomplishments over the past five years, such as the infusion of major gifts, the growth in research and graduate students, and the growth in undergraduate enrollments and high quality student services, has positioned the college for an exciting future. While I will miss helping shape that future, I know that the excellent faculty and staff of this college will keep our momentum going."

The Whitacre College of Engineering wishes Dr. Eibeck luck in her exciting new leadership position at the University of the Pacific.

Engineers Week

During the week of February 16, Engineers Week was held in the Whitacre College of Engineering. The week was filled with exciting activities to promote engineering within the college and university. The Engineers Week activities included:

College Banner Design Contest Design Demonstrations
Engineering Job Fair GEAR Lego Robotics Competition
Honors Convocation Job Fair Interviews
Pink Engineering Day Student Organization Cookout
Student Organizations Fair Trebuchet Contest


Bike Parade

The Texas Tech T-STEM Center, the School of Art, and the Institute for the Development and Enrichment of Advanced Learners (IDEAL), in partnership with Lubbock ISD's Atkins Middle School, earned statewide awards Jan. 27 in Austin as part of the 2009 State Education Awards Program. The Texas Association of Partners in Education, which celebrates Texas education partnerships, recognized Martha Hise as outstanding partnership advocate. Hise is the director of Texas Tech's IDEAL and chairman of the Lubbock Independent School District's Partners in Education program.


Eight Texas Tech and West Texas A&M students recently participated in a Bell Helicopter engineering boot camp. For the eight students at the Amarillo site, their challenge was to develop a better way to keep a V-22 Osprey grounded during initial tests, or ground runs, of the aircraft.

“Being right there in the mix of everything, physically measuring the aircraft, doing calculations on it, talking to the shop guys, it was a really neat experience – a once-in-a-lifetime experience,” says Justin Rivera, a junior mechanical engineering major.


Faculty Recognitions


Dr. Kishor Mehta, P. W. Horn Professor of Civil Engineering and former Director of the Wind Science and Engineering Research Center has been elected to the Indian Academy of Engineering. (INAE) The aim of INAE is “To promote and advance the practice of engineering and technology and the related science and disciplines and their application to problems of national importance.” He joins 617 Fellows of Indian citizens and 47 Foreign Fellows.

Dr. Yanzhang Ma, associate professor of mechanical engineering, was featured, along with other contributors, in the February issue of Nature Magazine. 

Staff Recognitions

Brittany Campbell was hired as a Senior Business Assistant in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering on January 20.

Suzanne Cox has been hired as a Development Officer in the Dean's Office effective February 16.

Glenda Shumate was promoted to Senior Business Assistant in the Dean's Office on February 1.

Grants and Contracts

01-09-2009 - 02-17-2009

Chemical Engineering

  • Dr. Gregory B. McKenna was awarded $21,500 by John Wiley & Sons, Inc. The title of the proposal was "JPS - Physics."
  • Drs. Gregory B. McKenna and Brandon L. Weeks were awarded $100,116 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Nanoscale Features in the Mechano-Chemistry of Energetic Materials: Novel Thermal and Force Scanning Probe Measurements."
  • Dr. Brandon L. Weeks was awarded $9,023.30 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU Site: Micro and Nano Device Engineering."

Center for Multidisciplinary Research in Transportation

  • Dr. Moon Won was awarded $9,999 by the Texas Department of Transportation. The title of the proposal was "5-4893: Pilot Implementation of CRCP Overlay on Jointed Concrete Pavement."

Center for Pulsed Power and Power Electronics

  • Drs. James C. Dickens and Andreas A. Neuber were awarded $132,083 by AFOSR/University of Wisconsin. The title of the proposal was "The Nanophysics of Electron Emission and Breakdown for High Power Microwave Sources."

Electrical and Computer Engineering

  • Dr. Mary C. Baker was awarded $136,767.75 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "GK-12: Building Bridges: Integrating Mathematics, Science, and Engineering Education on the South Plains."
  • Dr. Donald Lie was awarded $25,000 by Texas Instruments Incorporated. The title of the proposal was "HVAL Research."
  • Drs. Ayrton Bernussi, Timothy J. Dallas, and Richard O. Gale were awarded $69,479.41 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU Site: Micro and Nano Device Engineering."

Industrial Engineering

  • Dr. Ismael R deFarias was awarded $79,524 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Cardinality Bounded Mathematical Programs: New Techniques, Models and Computation."

Mechanical Engineering

  • Dr. Michelle L. Pantoya was awarded $45,539 by NSF/Ironbridge Technologies, Inc. The title of the proposal was "Energy Transfer Studies of Pyrophoric Iron for Food Heating Applications."
  • Dr. Michelle L. Pantoya was awarded $60,000 by the Office of Naval Research. The title of the proposal was "Fundamental Understanding and Improvement of Energetic Reactions of Aluminum Particles with Oxidizers and Metals."
  • Dr. Michelle L. Pantoya was awarded $92,340 by the DOD/DTRA/University of Texas. The title of the proposal was "Impact Driven Reactions in Select Thermites and Reactive Materials."
  • Dr. Yanzhang Ma was awarded $36,146 by the U.S. Army Research Office. The title of the proposal was "Phase Transformations in Ceramics under Compression and Shear."
  • Dr. Jordan M. Berg was awarded $4,511.65 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU Site: Micro and Nano Device Engineering."
  • Dr. Darryl L. James was awarded $62,196 by the Sandia National Laboratories. The title of the proposal was "Sunshine to Petrol."

Nano Tech Center

  • Drs. Hongxing Jiang and Jingyu Lin were awarded $250,213 by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. The title of the proposal was "AlInGaN Bandgap and Doping Engineering for Visible Laser Diodes."
  • Drs. Jordan M. Berg and Ayrton Bernussi were awarded $7,218.64 by the National Science Foundation. The title of the proposal was "REU Site: Micro and Nano Device Engineering."

Water Resources Center

  • Drs. Ernest B. Fish, Annette Hernandez, Kenneth A. Rainwater and Richard E. Zartman were awarded $100,000 by the Texas State Soil & Water Conservation Board. The title of the proposal was "Design of Monitoring Program for Water Yield Enhancement Program."

Student Accomplishments

Bridge Team The Texas Tech Student Chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Steel Bridge Team has qualified for the ASCE National Steel Bridge Competition at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas in May 2009. This is the first time that the Texas Tech chapter has qualified for nationals. The team is led by co-captains Allen Johnson and Derek Hammond. The team took third place at the Texas-Mexico Steel Bridge Competition in College Station, Texas on Saturday, January 17, 2009. The team received the following awards:

  • 2nd Place - Construction Speed
  • 2nd Place - Stiffness
  • 3rd Place - Economy
  • 3rd Place - Overall (Qualification for National Competition)

Team members include:

Designers Jake Blessen
Derek Hammond
Allen Johnson
Construction Team Jake Blessen
Derek Hammond
Allen Johnson
Wesley Kumfer
Fabrication Team Patrick Alfarone
Jake Blessen
Jeremy Dixon
Derek Hammond
Wesley Kumfer
Kayla Sisk


Ladd Seaberg, (B.S.Ch.E '69) Board Chairman of MGP Ingredients, was inducted into the Atchison, Kansas Area Chamber of Commerce Hall of Fame. The induction ceremony occurred in conjunction with the Chamber’s 90th Annual Membership Banquet on Saturday, Jan. 17, at the Atchison Heritage Conference Center.

The Chamber’s Hall of Fame was established to recognize individuals who have generously contributed their time, service and philanthropic support to enhance the economic well-being of the Atchison area. Members of this prestigious group demonstrate outstanding leadership qualities, visionary excellence and unwavering commitment to improving the quality of life for all citizens through a variety of progressive programs and initiatives.

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