Virginia Tech® home

Who We Are

Who We Are

Our Mission

We offer a world-class education through exceptional advising, pedagogy, scholarship, and operational practices that empower informed career decisions and serve as a meaningful touch point for undergraduate and graduate engineering students at Virginia Tech.

We are a community of forward-thinking professionals who develop and disseminate knowledge, fostering cohesion between innovative research and practice. 

Our Vision 

We are a globally-recognized leader in preparing emerging engineers, educators, and scholars who work across technical, cultural and social boundaries to address contemporary challenges and serve the broader community.

We influence practice, advance knowledge, and shape careers in an environment that nurtures learning and growth within the field of engineering education. 

Get to know us!

Our annual report is the best overview of our department's work for the past year.
From our research grants to article highlights, to our collection of publications, review what we're about!


From the Department Head

Although many of the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic are still with us and will be for a long time, 2022 was the year where we really managed to return to a “new normal.” As the Spring semester progressed, bringing with it the welcomed warmer weather and longer days, we also saw the end of the classroom mask mandate. There was much celebration at the end of this academic year, with first-year students busily in the Frith Makerspace finalizing their design projects, and our new cohort of Interdisciplinary Capstone students presenting their work to industry sponsors in an expo — see these projects in the article on page 22 in this report. We had a massive celebration when many of our Ph.D. graduates finally got the opportunity to “walk” in the commencement ceremony, and we were able to congratulate our Watford award winners in-person — read more about them on page 42. We were also delighted to resume traveling in our Rising Sophomore Abroad Program (RSAP) — read more about this on page 15 in this report!

During the Fall, we saw the fruits of an exceptional hiring season, welcoming five new tenured and tenure-track faculty (bringing that total to 19), two new collegiate faculty (bringing that total to six), and two new advisors (bringing that total to 10) — go to page 46 to read more about them. Our Department now has a full time complement of 50 faculty and staff, having grown by nearly a third over the last five years. This level of resource enables us to offer high quality education to close on 3,000 first year students and more than 50 PhD. All of this is underpinned by a vibrant and externally funded program in Engineering Education Research. During this same 5-year period, our tenure-track and tenured faculty have doubled their levels of funding and publications. During 2022, we celebrated a $3 million grant awarded from the NSF to a team of our faculty who will take the lead on a new multi-institutional partnership to support low-income students in engineering programs across the country — read more about it on page 12! This report also showcases the many awards and recognition that our faculty and students.

During this year, I have been served by an exceptional leadership team in the Department, with two new Assistant Department Heads, and an enlarged structure for my Executive Committee, bringing a greater diversity of voices into Departmental decision-making.

Jenni Case

2022 also saw the first in-person Advisory Board Spring meeting since the pandemic, and following that the election of a new Chair and Vice-Chair to our Departmental Advisory Board, and the recruitment of three new energetic and skilled members. This group continues to be important external advocates for our work while also bringing fresh external perspectives on strategic priorities. You can get a sense of the value of this work by reading the article on page 18 highlighting their collective perspectives on the future priorities for the preparation of engineers.

Going forward, we have updated our Strategic Plan to guide the next five years of work. A key focus continues to be creating a space for focused development of talent — building a community where everyone can flourish. We have a renewed focus on strategic deployment of our resources — looking especially at space and finances, as well as improving our processes for graduate student funding. We are excited to be centrally involved in the planning of the new Frith Lab and adjacent classroom space in Mitchell Hall (the replacement for Randolph Hall). Inspired by the College Strategic Plan, we are having a relook at our undergraduate courses to make sure we have the best possible alignment with the outcomes that students will need for employment in a rapidly changing world. This runs alongside our work to more closely integrate our research and teaching as well as the operations that support these. Finally, we aim to lift the bar on building our reputation nationally and internationally, by smarter communication of the distinct set of niches in which we are making an impact.

This was really a very productive year with significant developments and achievements. The “new normal” is looking like a great place to be — after the worst of this pandemic we will certainly never again take for granted the joy of working together and interacting with our students. We are proud to present a documentation of the year’s highlights in this annual report. Thank you for your interest in and support for our work.

Warm regards,
Jenni Case

Supplemental funding: Institutional Transformation: Cultivating an Ethical STEM Culture through an Integrated Undergraduate General Education
$111,921 | PI: Dr. Diana Bairaktarova

Supplemental Funding: Research: Examining the impact of mechanical objects in students learning of thermodynamics-related engineering problems
$67,184 | PI: Dr. Diana Bairaktarova

SCC-CIVIC-PG Track A: Youth-centered civic technology & citizen science for improving community heat resilience infrastructure
$50,000 | Co-PI: Dr. Jake Grohs

Collaborative Research: RFE: An exploration of how faculty mentoring influences doctoral student psychological safety and the impact on work-related outcomes
$197,016 | PI: Dr. Mark Huerta

EAGER: Natural Language Processing for Teaching and Research in Engineering Education
$299,647 | PI: Dr. Andrew Katz

Collaborative Research: a research hub for understanding inter- and intra- institutional partnerships that systematically support low-income engineering students
$2,399,501 | PI: Dr. David Knight

Broadening Participation in Engineering (BPE): Inclusive Mentoring Hubs (IM Hubs) Grant for the formation of an inclusive mentoring hub called Raíces (or roots in Spanish) Institute for Transformative Advocacy (RITA)
$799,994 | Co-PI: Dr. Homero Murzi

CAREER: Sustainable Racial Equity: Creating a New Generation of Engineering Education DEI Leaders
$663,883 | PI: Dr. Homero Murzi

Collaborative: Research Initiation: Assessing Global Engagement Interventions to Advance Global Engineering Competence for Engineering Formation
$23,973 | PI: Dr. Homero Murzi

Collaborative Research: Intelligently Connecting the Professional and Educational Communities to Prepare the Future Construction Engineering Workforce
$2,163,084 | Co-PI: Dr. Homero Murzi

NRT: Disaster Resilience and Risk Management (DRRM) - Creating quantitative decision making frameworks for multi-dimensional and multi-scale analysis of hazard impact
$175,948 | PI: Dr. Marie Paretti

Advancing Student-Centered Teaching for Engineering Disciplinary Knowledge Building
$299,959 | PI: Dr. Nicole Pitterson

Collaboration in Engineering Student and Practitioner Teams:  A Study of Beliefs about Effective Behaviors
$265,127 | PI: Dr. Nicole Pitterson

The Computer Science as a Career (CSAC) Scholars Program
$408,884 | Co-PI: Dr. Sarah Rodriguez

Center for Equity in Engineering: Organizational Transformation for Graduate Education
$1,199,981 | PI: Dr. Julie Ross

NSF Graduate Research Fellowships
Stephen Moyer & Andrea Schuman

Student-Lead Early Academic Career Undergraduate Research in Sustainable Materials and Processes
$29,625 | PI: Dr. David Gray

Motivating Successful Advising: Creating Productive Doctoral Advising Relationships in Engineering
$15,919 | PI: Dr. Holly Matusovich
Arizona State University

Artificial Intelligence for All: A Framework for a College Certificate
$119,592 | PI: Dr. Sarah Rodriguez
The District Board of Trustees of Miami Dade College, Florida & NSF International

Developing a Quantification System for Robot Moral Agency
$13,099 | PI: Dr. Qin Zhu
George Mason University & The US Air Force Office of Scientific Research

Growing a Community of Compassionate Higher Education Teachers in STEM
$234,799 | PIs: Dr. Qin Zhu, et al.
John Templeton Foundation

Identifying & Comparing how people in different cultures & sectors perceive and prioritize AI ethical issues differently
$24,926.25 | PIs: Drs. Qin Zhu & Rockwell Clancy
4-VA Collaborative Research

Towards a Global ethics of artificial intelligence: Exploring and assessing intercultural ethical perspectives on AI
$10,000 | PI: Dr. Rockwell Clancy
Engineering Faculty Organization-Opportunity Grant, Virginia Tech Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science

Big Contribution Grant
$5000 | PI: Dr. David Gray
Students’ Engineering Council at Virginia Tech

High Impact Project: ACC-ALN Design Thinking ImpACCt
$8,325 | PI: Dr. David Gray
Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning

Center for Coastal Studies: Using natural language processing and social network analysis to investigate tweets about impacts of Covid 19 and climate change
$15,000 | PI: Dr. Andrew Katz
Center for Coastal Studies

+Policy Fellowship: Exploring AI Ethics Policy Concerns and Career Pathways of the AI Professionals with Policy Training Experience
$10,500 | PIs: Drs. Dayoung Kim & Qin Zhu
Policy Destination Area (PDA) of the Institute for Society, Culture, and Environment (ISCE) at Virginia Tech

An investigation of factors related to engineering major selection and persistence after impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic
$10,000 | PI: Dr. Susan Sajadi
Engineering Faculty Organization-Opportunity Grant, Virginia Tech Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science

Exploring the Eco-ethical Identity for Responsible AI Research among Faculty and Students
$20,000 | PI: Qin Zhu
Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science Diversity & Inclusion Seed Investment

From early career faculty transitions to logic models to equity and inclusion in the engineering classroom, our faculty have published a wide variety of journal articles this year.

Artiles, M., & Matusovich, H. (2022). Doctoral Advisor Selection in Chemical Engineering: Evaluating Two Programs through Principal Agent Theory. Studies in Engineering Education, 2(2), pp. 120–140.

Artiles, M.S., & Matusovich, H.M. (2022) Choosing a Doctoral Advisor: A Study of Chemical Engineering Students? Perspectives Using Basic Needs Theory. International Journal of Engineering Education 38(5), 1212-1222

Benning, J., Shearer, C., Kellogg, S., & Oakes, W. (2022). Impact of Service Learning on Engineering Student Development. International Journal of Engineering Education 38(1), 253-263.

Boyd-Sinkler, K. E., Holloman, T. K., Pee, C. M., Lee, W. C., & London, J. S. (2022). Black Students in Undergraduate Engineering Programs: A Qualitative Systematic Review. Journal of Negro Education, 91(1), 112-124.

Case, J., & Blackie, M. (2022). Engineering Education Research for educational change: the possibilities of critical realism for conceptualising causal mechanisms in education. Southern Journal of Engineering Education, 1, 61-74.

Case, J. M., & Heydenrych, H. (2022). A New Chemical Engineering Curriculum for a New South Africa: Assessing the Impact of Duncan Fraser’s Three Decades of Educational Research and Reform. Process Integration and Optimization for Sustainability, 1-14.

Case, J. M., & Marshall, D. (2022). Knowledge-building in higher education research: analysing the work of a South African scholar, Suellen Shay. Teaching in Higher Education, 27(8), 962-978.

Clancy III, R. F., & Zhu, Q. (2022). Global Engineering Ethics: What? Why? How? and When?. Journal of International Engineering Education, 4(1), 4.

Davis, K., Deters, J., Ozkan, D., Davis, J., & Murzi, H. (2022). Exploring the Process and Outcomes of Leading a Study Abroad Program Using Real-Time Perspectives. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 34(2), 351-381.

Davis, K., Sanderlin, N., & Knight, D. (2022). Applying Organizational Lenses to Understand the Potential for International Research Experiences for Students to Catalyze Broader Internationalization. The Internationalisation of Higher Education and Research, 3, A.2.1-10.

Deem, R., Case, J. M., & Nokkala, T. (2022). Researching inequality in higher education: tracing changing conceptions and approaches over fifty years. Higher Education, 84(6), 1245-1265.

Denton, M., Borrego, M., & Knight, D. B. (2022). US postdoctoral careers in life sciences, physical sciences and engineering: Government, industry, and academia. Plos one, 17(2), e0263185.

Deters, J., Holloman, T. K., Grote, D., Taylor, A. R., & Knight, D. (2022). Critically Examining the Role of Habitus for Minoritized Students in a Global Engineering Program. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 34(4), 172-205.

Espino, M. L., Rodriguez, S. L., & Le, B. D. (2022). A systematic review of literature: Engineering identity and students with financial need in community colleges. Community College Journal of Research and Practice, 46(5), 352-363.

Francis, R. A., Paretti, M.C., & Riedner, R. (2022). Theorizing Engineering Judgment at the Intersection of Decision-Making and Identity. Studies in Engineering Education, 3(1), 79–98.

Froehle, K., Dickman, L., Phillips, A. R., Murzi, H., & Paretti, M. (2022). Understanding Lifelong Learning and Skills Development: Lessons Learned from Practicing Civil Engineers. Journal of Civil Engineering Education, 148(4).

Grote, D. M., Richardson, A. J., Glisson, H. E., Knight, D. B., Lee, W. C., & Watford, B. A. (2022). Engineering community college transfer pathways through pre‐transfer programs. New Directions for Community Colleges, 2022(198), 77-91.

Howland, S. J., Kim, D., & Jesiek, B. K. (2022). Senior engineering students’ Reflection on their learning of ethics and morality: A qualitative investigation of influences and lessons learned. International Journal of Ethics Education, 7(1), 171-199.

Huang, W., London, J.S., Perry, L.A. (2022). Project-based Learning Promotes Students’ Perceived Relevance in an Engineering Statistics Course: A Comparison of Learning in Synchronous and Asynchronous Learning Environments. Journal of Statistics and Data Science Education, 00(0), 1-9.

Huerta, M., London, J., & Mckenna, A. (2022). Engineering Deans’ Perspectives on the Current State of Faculty Development Programs in Engineering Education. International Journal of Engineering Education, 38(4), 1073-1091.

Jalali, Y., Matheis, C., & Lohani, V. K. (2022). Imagination and Moral Deliberation: A Case Study of an Ethics Discussion Session. International Journal of Engineering Education, 38(3), 709-718.

Katz, A., & Main, J. (2022). Applying Concepts from Political Science and Economics to Advance the Study of Engineering Education. Studies in Engineering Education, 3(1), 28–52.

Kim, D., Jesiek, B. K., & Mazzurco, A. (2022). Development and validation of the sojourn readiness assessment (SRA): Exploratory and confirmatory factor analysis and translation to Chinese. International Journal of Intercultural Relations, 88, 95-105.

Klassen, M., & Case, J. M. (2022). Productive tensions? Analyzing the arguments made about the field of engineering education research. Journal of Engineering Education, 111(1), 214-231.

Lee, W. C., Hall, J. L., Godwin, A., Knight, D. B., & Verdín, D. (2022). Operationalizing and monitoring student support in undergraduate engineering education. Journal of Engineering Education, 111(1), 82-110.

Lee, W. C., & Rodriguez, S. L. (2022). Reimagining STEM Higher Education Research: Part 1. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 28(2), v-ix.

Lim, T. C., Wilson, B., Grohs, J. R., & Pingel, T. J. (2022). Community-engaged heat resilience planning: Lessons from a youth smart city STEM program. Landscape and Urban Planning, 226, 104497.

London, J.S., Douglas, E.P., Loui, M.C. (2022). Guest Editorial: Introduction to the Special Themed Section on Engineering Education and the COVID-19 Pandemic. Journal of Engineering Education, 111(2), 275-276.Accessible at:

London, J. S., Lee, W. C., Watford, B. A., Ash, C. H., Holloman, T., Pee, C. M., & Hampton, C. (2022). Climbing Uphill: Toward a Common Agenda for the Advancement of Black Americans in Engineering. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 28(3), 101-118.

McArthur, J., Blackie, M., Pitterson, N., & Rosewell, K. (2022). Student perspectives on assessment: connections between self and society. Assessment & Evaluation in Higher Education, 47(5), 698-711.

McCord, K. H., Ayer, S. K., Perry, L. A., Patil, K. R., London, J. S., Khoury, V., & Wu, W. (2022). Student Approaches and Performance in Element Sequencing Tasks Using 2D and Augmented Reality Formats. Education Sciences, 12(4), 247.

Miska, J. W., Mathews, L., Driscoll, J., Hoffenson, S., Crimmins, S., Espera Jr, A., & Pitterson, N. (2022). How do undergraduate engineering students conceptualize product design? An analysis of two third‐year design courses. Journal of Engineering Education, 111(3), 616-641.

Mogashana, D., Case, J. M., & Williams, K. (2022). How ADP students navigate enablements and constraints of the programme: an exploration of structure and agency. South African Journal of Higher Education, 36(2), 204-221.

Norris, M. B., Grohs, J. R., & Knight, D. B. (2022). Investigating student approaches to scenario-based assessments of systems thinking. Frontiers in Education, 7.

Novoselich, B. J., & Knight, D. B. (2022). Measuring a moving target: Techniques for engineering leadership evaluation and assessment. New Directions for Student Leadership, 2022(173), 63-71.

Ogunseiju, O. R., Gonsalves, N., Akanmu, A. A., Bairaktarova, D., Bowman, D. A., & Jazizadeh, F. (2022). Mixed reality environment for learning sensing technology applications in Construction: A usability study. Advanced Engineering Informatics, 53, 101637.

Paradise, T., Chowdhury, T., Davis, K., Murzi, H., & Soledad, M. (2022). Developing Global Competency Virtually: Student Experiences in a Global Program That Transitioned Online due to the COVID-19 Pandemic. Frontiers: The Interdisciplinary Journal of Study Abroad, 34(2), 56-80.

Paradise, T., Schilling, M. R., Grohs, J., & Laney, J. L. (2022). Teacher Experiences in a Community-Based Rural Partnership: Recognizing Community Assets. Journal of Pre-College Engineering Education Research (J-PEER), 12(1), 3.

Perez, R. J., Motshubi, R., & Rodriguez, S. L. (2022). “We are a huge source of labor”: Exploring STEM Graduate Students’ Roles in Changing Departmental Climate. The Review of Higher Education, 46(1), 33-66.

Rodriguez, S. L., Doran, E. E., Sissel, M., & Estes, N. (2022). Becoming la ingeniera: Examining the engineering identity development of undergraduate Latina students. Journal of Latinos and Education, 21(2), 181-200.

Rodriguez, S. L., & Lee, W. C. (2022). Reimagining STEM Higher Education Research: Part 2. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering, 28(3), v-viii.

Rodriguez, S. L., Perez, R. J., & Schulz, J. M. (2022). How STEM lab settings influence graduate school socialization and climate for students of color. Journal of Diversity in Higher Education, 15(1), 58-72.

Smith, N. L., Grohs, J. R., & Van Aken, E. M. (2022). Comparison of transfer shock and graduation rates across engineering transfer student populations. Journal of Engineering Education, 111(1), 65-81.

Szöke, M., Katz, A., Borgoltz, A., & Devenport, W. (2022). Development of Hybrid Laboratory Sessions during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Advances in Engineering Education, 10(2), 80-100.

Tan, L., Bradburn, I. S., Knight, D. B., Kinoshita, T., & Grohs, J. (2022). SAT patterns and engineering and computer science college majors: an intersectional, state-level study. International Journal of STEM Education, 9(1), 68.

Wallwey, C., Longmeier, M. M., Hayde, D., Armstrong, J., Kajfez, R., & Pelan, R. (2022). Consider “HACKS” when designing hackathon challenges: Hook, action, collaborative knowledge sharing. Frontiers in Education, 7.

West, P., Paige, F., Lee, W., Watts, N., & Scales, G. (2022). Using Learning Analytics and Student Perceptions to Explore Student Interactions in an Online Construction Management Course. Journal of Civil Engineering Education, 148(4), 05022001.

Younes, R., & Bairaktarova, D. (2022). ViTA: A flexible CAD-tool-independent automatic grading platform for two-dimensional CAD drawings. International Journal of Mechanical Engineering Education, 50(1), 135-157.

ENGE Graduate Students who Passed the Preliminary Exam
Amy Richardson, Qualla Ketchum, Yasir Gamieldien, Maya Menon*, Carol Geary, Isil Anakok, Karen Martinez Soto, Jazmin Jurkiewicz, Sidd Kumar & Julia Brisbane

*In the printed annual report, Malini Josiam's photo was accidentally printed instead of Maya Menon. This has been corrected in the web version of the report.

Undergraduate Scholarship Recipients

Anna Walter
Harry New Jones II Scholarship

Kathryn Sloan
H. Powell Chapman, Jr. Award

Thomas Lu
Harry New Jones II Scholarship

Zach Lowicki
H. Powell Chapman, Jr. Award

Diana Bairaktarova
Dr. Diana Bairaktarova
Named to editorial advisory board for the International Journal of Engineering Education
David Gray
Dr. David Gray
Undergraduate Research Advisor Award 
Lynn Nystrom Award (incl. his undergraduate Research Team)
Jeremi London
Dr. Jeremi London
Promoted to Associate Professor with tenure 
Ben Chambers
Dr. Ben Chambers
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching
Homero Murzi
Dr. Homero Murzi
Dean’s Award for Excellence in Teaching
David Knight
Dr. David Knight    
COE Outstanding Mentor Award, VT Graduate School
Named Co-Editor of the Journal of Engineering Education
Wickenden Honorable Mention
Marie Paretti
Dr. Marie Paretti
2022 Ronald S. Blicq Award for Distinction in Technical Communication Education
Co-recipient of the Rudolph J. Joenk Jr. Award for Best Paper in the IEEE Transactions on Professional Communication
Holly Matusovich
Dr. Holly Matusovich
2022 Alumni Award for Excellence in Graduate Academic Advising at Virginia Tech
Appointed as Associate Dean for Graduate and Professional Studies, College of Engineering
Bevlee Watford
Dr. Bevlee Watford
The Student Engineers’ Council at Virginia Tech endowed a $100,000 scholarship named the Bevlee Watford Inclusion Scholarship for incoming engineering students.
Lisa McNair
Dr. Lisa McNair
Alumni Award for Outreach Excellence (Team Achievement)
Chelsea Lyles, Affiliate Faculty for ENGE
Dr. Chelsea Lyles
Alumni Award for Outreach Excellence (Team Achievement)
Dean Julie Ross
2022 Outstanding Woman Leader in Virginia Higher Education
Isil Anakok
Isil Anakok
Edward A. Bouchet Graduate Honor Society Inductee
Lisa Schibelius
Lisa Schibelius
Named new associate members of VT Graduate Academy for Teaching Excellence
Karen Martinez-Soto
Karen Martinez-Soto
Named new associate members of VT Graduate Academy for Teaching Excellence
Sarah Blackowski
Dr. Sarah Blackowski
Virginia Tech Graduate School’s Teaching Excellence Award, Graduate Instructor of Record
Kai Jun KJ Chew
Dr. Kai Jun Chew
Dr. Bevlee A. Watford Outstanding Doctoral Student
Janice Hall
Dr. Janice Hall
Dr. Bevlee A. Watford Outstanding Dissertation Award
David Reeping
Dr. David Reeping
2022 Wickenden Honorable Mention
Cassandra McCall
Dr. Cassandra McCall
2022 Wickenden Award
Adam Masters
Adam Masters
2022 Wickenden Award

2022 was an exciting year for our department! Whether team members transitioned to new roles at Virginia Tech, outside the institution, or just joined Engineering Education, we've had tremendous growth. Read about our 2022 transitions and new arrivals, or see how department looks right now in the directory.

Engineering Education graduate students and Ph.D. alumni smiling together at the 2022 ASEE conference

Welcome to Engineering Education!

April Mullins
April Mullins
Academic & Career Advisor
Devin Erb
Devin Erb
Academic & Career Advisor
Tremayne Waller
Tremayne Waller
Affiliate Faculty
Sreyoshi Bhaduri
Sreyoshi Bhaduri
Advisory Board Member
Brian Novoselich
Brian Novoselich
Advisory Board Member
Will Hill
Will Hill
Advisory Board Member

Meet our Fall 2022 Graduate Student Cohort

 Marin Fisher
Olivia Ryan
Michelle Ausman
Beyza Nur Guler
Vladimir Sanchez Padilla
Talha Bin Asad
Larkin Martini
Joseph Sturgess
Brian Chan
James Newcomer

 (left to right, top to bottom): Eman Amer, Michelle Choi Ausman, Tahla Bin Asad, Brian Chan, Marin Fisher, Beyza Nur Guler, Larkin Martini, James Newcomer, Olivia Ryan, Vladimir Sanchez Padilla and Joseph Sturgess


Thank you to our advisory board members for their years of dedication & service to ENGE!

Brian Self
Brian Self
Noel Schultz
Noel Schultz
Chuck Clifton
Chuck Clifton
David Heard
David Heard
Sharon Scott
Sharon Scott