Dr. Walter Lee

Walter Lee, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
373 Goodwin Hall
Blacksburg, VA 24061




Ph.D. Engineering Education, Virginia Tech, 2015
M.S. Industrial & Systems Engineering, Virginia Tech, 2013
B.S. Industrial Engineering, Clemson University, 2010

Research Interests:

  • Co-curricular Support
  • Student Success/Retention
  • Inclusive Diversity
  • STEM Learning Environments

Dr. Walter Lee is broadly interested in diversity and inclusion—particularly as it relates to improving the experiences of students from groups that are traditionally underrepresented or underserved in engineering. His research is focused on answering the following questions: 1) How might we better support a diverse population of students? 2) How might we make engineering more inclusive? 3) How might we broaden participation in engineering? 4) How might we educate engineering students and faculty about diversity? Collectively, Dr. Lee aligns his research, teaching, advising, and service towards moving the engineering education community closer towards having answers to each of these questions. This goal also inspired the creation of his research group GUIDE , or Growing in our Understanding of Inclusive Diversity in Engineering.

Graduate Students Advised:

  • Karis Boyd-Sinkler
  • Janice Hall
  • Cynthia Hampton
  • Teirra Holloman
  • Ashley Taylor


Walter Lee is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Engineering Education and Assistant Director for Research in the Center for the Enhancement of Engineering Diversity.  He holds a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Clemson University, an M.S in Industrial & Systems Engineering from Virginia Tech, and a Ph.D. in Engineering Education from Virginia Tech. His career vision is to be a driving force in the national effort to diversify engineering and ensure that institutions provide students with the necessary support to succeed regardless of their background.

Selected Awards & Honors:

  • 20 High-achieving Researchers and Educators under 40, PRISM Magazine, 2018
  • Best Paper Award, Collaborative Network for Engineering and Computing Diversity (CoNECD), 2018
  • Outstanding New Assistant Professor, Virginia Tech College of Engineering, 2018
  • Outstanding Young Alumni, Clemson College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Science, 2018
  • Apprecentice Faculty Grant, ASEE-ERM, 2015
  • Best Division Paper, ASEE-MIND, 2014
  • NSF Graduate Research Fellow, 2012

Selected Publications:

  • Lee, W.C., Godwin A. and Hermundstad A.L. (2018). Development of the engineering student integration instrument: Rethinking measures of integration. Journal of Engineering Education,107(1), 30-55
  • Lee, W.C., Lutz, B., and Hermundstad A.L (2018). Learning from practitioners that support underrepresented students in engineering. Journal of Professional Issues in Engineering Education and Practice, 144(2), 1-11
  • Lee, W.C., Brozina, C., Amelink C.T. and Jones B.D. (2017). Motivating incoming engineering students with diverse backgrounds: Assessing a summer bridge program’s impact on academic motivation. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 23(2), 121-145
  • Lee, W.C. and Matusovich, H.M. (2016). A model of co-curricular support for undergraduate engineering students. Journal of Engineering Education, 105(3), 406-430
  • Lee, W.C., Matusovich, H.M and Brown, P.R. (2014). Measuring underrepresented student perceptions of inclusion within engineering departments and universities. International Journal of Engineering Education, 30(1), 150-165.
  • Lee, W.C., Kajfez, R.L. and Matusovich H.M. (2013). Motivating engineering students: Evaluating an engineering student support center with the MUSIC model of academic motivation (JWM6747). Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 19(3), 245-271.