There are five new faculty members that joined the Charles E. Via, Jr. Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering this academic year.
Madeleine M. Flint received her master’s and her doctoral degrees in civil and environmental engineering from Stanford University in 2010 and 2014, respectively, specializing in structural engineering and geomechanics. Her undergraduate degree was in structural engineering from the University of California at San Diego, earned in 2007. She spent a year at Stanford as a postdoctoral scholar in the area of earth system science before joining Virginia Tech. Her postdoctoral research assessed the impact of climate change on the transportation infrastructure. Her graduate work developed a framework for performance-based durability engineering. Flint enjoyed a stint at Norwegian University of Science and Technology in 2011, working on the sustainability of repair strategies for Norwegian coastal reinforced concrete bridges. The position was made possible by the National Science Foundation (NSF), which awarded her a Nordic Research Opportunity Fellowship. Among her honors and awards, Flint received a 2015 Rising Environmental Leader award from the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. Flint also received a 2013 Achievement Reward for College Scientists from the ARCS Foundation, a national nonprofit organization that boosts American leadership and aids advacement in science and technology.
Matthew H. Hebdon, Professional Engineer (PE), received his doctorate in civil engineering in 2015 from Purdue University. Previously, he earned a master’s and a bachelor’s degree in civil and environmental engineering (CEE) from Utah State University in 2005. He worked as a structural design engineer at Sargent Engineers, Inc., from 2005 until 2010. As a licensed PE, his responsibilities included the structural design of residential and small commercial buildings, as well as inspection of bridges for structural deficiencies. In his doctoral studies, Hebdon investigated the member-level redundancy of built-up steel girders by testing full-scale specimens for fracture resilience and remaining fatigue life of partially failed members.
Farrokh Jazizadeh Karimi’s interests are at the intersection of data management, data driven informatics, and built environment sustainability and adaptability. He is interested in leveraging the dynamics of the built environment towards improved and flexible performance at different scales from building/facilities to regional/urban levels. Karimi received his doctorate in civil engineering with a focus on informatics for intelligent built environment from the University of Southern California (USC) at Los Angeles in 2015. His Ph.D. followed two master’s degrees, also earned from USC’s Viterbi School of Engineering in computer science (2013) and in civil engineering (2011). Prior to his Ph.D. studies, Karimi attended the Isfahan University of Technology, Isfahan, Iran, where he obtained his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering in 2002 and Amirkabir University of Technology, Tehran, Iran, where he earned a master’s degree in civil engineering in 2004.
Tripp Shealy is a three-time civil engineering (CE) graduate of Clemson University. He received his bachelor’s degree in 2010, his master’s in 2013, and his doctorate in 2015. While obtaining his doctorate he was the primary instructor for the construction section of the CE Capstone Design course. He guided students through project estimating, scheduling, and sustainability concepts. He also developed two additional online courses: “Are codes enough? Disaster mitigation and residential buildings” and “Sustainable construction.” His research focus is on judgment and decision making for sustainable infrastructure. He targets underexplored areas by applying concepts from psychology, behavioral economics, and data science to implement cost effective ways to guide stakeholders in the infrastructure development process towards decisions that lead to more sustainable outcomes.
Since December, 2011, Zhiwu (Drew) Wang has served as a visiting assistant professor at The Ohio State University. For the past year, he has handled additional responsibilities as director of the renewable energy program. At OSU, Wang pursued a number of research projects including: development of a unique biogranulation process for agricultural drainage water treatment; research of the solid-state anaerobic digestion technique; development of a copyrighted software program for anaerobic digester simulation; and the establishment of an advanced bioenergy laboratory. He also developed syllabi for and taught six courses including topics relating to waste-to-bioenergy conversion and feedstock evaluation and analysis. He also lectured in environmental resource, agricultural business, and Upward-Bound programs.