Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering

Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering


  • 1889 Civil engineering taught as a component of the first Mechanics Course

    The North Carolina College of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts (A&M) taught two curricula: agriculture and mechanics. The mechanics curriculum included fundamentals of civil and mechanical engineering.


  • 1895 Department of Civil Engineering and Mathematics established

    Mechanics Course curricula divided; result was the creation of the Department of Civil Engineering and Mathematics

  • 1895 Wallace C. Riddick becomes first professor of civil engineering

    Wallace C. Riddick worked as a civil engineer before joining the faculty at NC State and continued professional service in Raleigh while teaching, including work on rebuilding the city’s water system. He served as President of North Carolina State College from 1916 to 1923, and was the founding dean of the School of Engineering from 1923 to 1937.

  • DefaultWallace Carl Riddick portrait [!!DUPLICATE!!]
  • 1898 First Asian Graduate

    Teisaku Sugishita of Japan graduates with a degree in Civil Engineering, becoming the first Asian student to receive a degree from NC State. Sugishita enrolled in 1894.

  • DefaultCollege of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts Class of 1898


  • 1906 Department of Civil Engineering established
  • 1906 First Professional Degree in Civil Engineering awarded to Caroll Lamb Mann


  • 1910 Winston Hall opens

    Winston Hall opens, housing civil, chemical, and electrical engineering courses. It was named for second college president George Tayloe Winston.

  • DefaultWinston Hall
  • 1916 Caroll Lamb Mann Sr. becomes head of department
  • DefaultCarroll L. Mann, Sr. portrait [!!Duplicate!!]
  • 1917 (circa) Highway engineering curriculum established


  • 1920 Civil Engineering Society induction

    The State College Civil Engineering Society is recognized by and inducted into the North Carolina Society of Civil Engineers

  • DefaultClass in hydraulics preparing to measure horsepower of stream
  • 1922 Undergraduate specialties in Civil Engineering

    Three undergraduate specialties were offered in the Civil Engineering degree program: General Civil Engineering, Highway Engineering, and Architectural Engineering.

  • 1925 First M.S. degree in engineering awarded in Civil Engineering
  • 1927 Undergraduate specialties revised

    Architectural engineering program and students were transferred to the new Architectural Engineering Department. The Civil Engineering Department instead offered special undergraduate specialties in General Civil Engineering, Highway Engineering, and Construction Engineering.

  • 1927 Wilfred George Geile joins faculty

    Structural engineer Wilfred George Geile joined the faculty as Associate Professor of Construction Engineering, and taught construction specialty courses that emphasize estimating, construction methods, construction engineering, and management of operations.

  • 1928 New Civil Engineering Building constructed

    By the 1920s, Winston Hall, shared by Civil Engineering and others, was no longer meeting the needs of the department. Construction of a new facility named the Civil Engineering Building began in 1927 and was completed in 1928. It was initially a two story building located south of the 1911 Building.

  • DefaultNC State University, Civil Engineering , general
  • 1928 First B.S. degree in Civil Engineering with Construction Engineering Option awarded

    John E. Powers of Maple Hill, N.C., was awarded the first B.S. in Civil Engineering with the Construction Engineering Option.


  • 1930 Associated General Contractors of America Charter

    NC State receives the first Charter issued by the Associated General Contractors of America for a Student Chapter. A student delegation received the charter at the A.G.C. national convention in Washington, DC, and met with President Hoover.

  • 1930 Degree specialty in Sanitary Engineering introduced

    The degree specialty in Sanitary Engineering was added to the Civil Engineering curriculum.

  • 1931 North Carolina Building Code

    The first North Carolina Building Code was published as Bulletin No. 10 of the NC State College Engineering Experiment Station, following efforts by construction and structural engineer Professor Wilfred George Geile to organize and create legislation for a State Building Code.

  • 1936 Civil Engineering curriculum receives accreditation

    Civil Engineering curriculum receives accreditation from the Engineers' Council for Professional Development.


  • 1942 Degree specialties phased out

    Due to low regular enrollments during World War II, degree specializations in Construction, Sanitary, Structural, and Transportation Engineering were phased out, leaving only the general Civil Engineering degree available.

  • 1947 Consolidated curriculum after World War II

    After attempting to reintroduce degree specialties in Construction, Sanitary, Structural, and Transportation Engineering, the department was overloaded with students returning from the war and offered only a "consolidated curriculum in Civil Engineering." The consolidated curriculum included courses from each of the option areas.

  • 1948 Charles R. Bramer serves as acting head of department
  • DefaultProfessor Charles R. Bramer, Dean Ralph E. Fadum and others
  • 1949 Ralph Fadum becomes head of department

    Ralph Fadum came to NC State in 1949 as a Professor and Head of the Department of Civil Engineering, holding this position until 1962.

  • DefaultRalph E. Fadum portrait


  • 1953 Emily Catherine Brown Blount becomes first woman student to receive a B.S. in Civil Engineering

    Emily Catherine Brown Blount of Fayetteville, NC, became the first woman student to receive a B.S. in civil engineering from NC State in 1953, and received a profession degree in civil engineering in 1954. Blount went on to become the first woman licensed Professional Engineer in North Carolina in 1960, and in 2007 she was inducted into the North Carolina Transportation Hall of Fame.

  • DefaultCivil engineering student Emily Brown with surveying equipment
  • 1954 Civil Engineering Construction Option (CEC) degree program approved

    Curriculum developed by Carroll Lamb Mann, Jr., who joined faculty in 1953.

  • DefaultDr. Ralph E. Fadum in classroom
  • 1955 Industrial Experiment Program established

    The North Carolina General Assembly provided support for the establishment of the Industrial Experiment Program, a service which expanded upon existing extension services in the School of Engineering to provide technical information to small industries. The program was designed to encourage new industry for the state and to increase utilization of the state’s natural resources.

  • DefaultDr. William C. Bell and Alex Carlyle inspecting shuttle kiln
  • 1956 Mann Hall dedicated

    The Civil Engineering Building expanded, 1950-1956, and was renamed Mann Hall after alumnus, retired professor, and department head Carroll Lamb Mann. Mann Hall later became the east wing of 111 Lampe Drive.

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  • 1960 Industrial Experiment Program becomes Industrial Extension Service

    Financial support for engineering extension doubled under North Carolina’s State Technical Services Act and the Public Works and Economic Development Act, and the Industrial Experiment Program changed its name to the Industrial Extension Service to give it a title more indicative of its function. The School of Engineering continued its extension classes in industrial centers in Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point, and frequently offered upper level and graduate course work at the centers.

  • DefaultNC State University, College of Engineering, extension services, industrial extension services
  • 1962 First Ph.D. awarded in Civil Engineering

    The graduate program at NC State expanded in the 1960s, with a growing emphasis on science and engineering education in the United States following the launch of the Sputnik satellite in the Soviet Union in 1957. Changes were gradually implemented in individual courses, and other areas of civil engineering expanded graduate programs including the first Ph.D. granted in Civil Engineering at NC State.

  • 1964 Brig. Gen. Richard Jewett leads extension

    With the support of the Carolinas Associate General Contractors and the North Carolina Licensing Board for General Contractors, retired Brig. Gen. Richard Jewett was hired to organize initial extension programs in construction focusing on company management.

  • 1965 Donald L. Dean becomes head of department
  • DefaultDonald L. Dean and student at computer
  • 1969 Ray DeBruhl leads extension

    With the arrival of Ray DeBruhl as the extension program coordinator, the position became a joint faculty and extension position. The program expanded to offer short courses and to prepare studies for associations such as NC Home builders and NCDOT. DeBruhl was instrumental in implementing the Code Officials Qualification Board and organizing early building inspector training programs.


  • 1973 Samia Galal Abdel Hamid Saad receives PhD in civil engineering

    Samia Galal Abdel Hamid Saad of Alexandria, Egypt, becomes the first woman to receive a PhD in civil engineering at NC State.

  • 1975-1977 First Ph.D. faculty in construction program hired, Stephens Nunnally and David Johnston

    Nunnally and Johnston were hired to re-implement a graduate program specializing in construction engineering.

  • 1976 Colonel William “Bill” D. Alexander III receives the College of Engineering’s Distinguished Alumni Award

    Civil Engineering alumnus Colonel William “Bill” D. Alexander III (CE, '53), was named the 1976 recipient of the College of Engineering’s Distinguished Alumni Award. Alexander contributed his engineering skills to the moon landings of the Apollo program in the 1960s as project manager for the design of the NASA Launch Support Facility.

  • 1978 Masters degrees with construction specialty offered

    After being suspended in the 1940s, the Master of Civil Engineering and Master of Science degrees in Civil Engineering with a specialty in Construction Engineering became available again. This began a steady stream of graduate degrees awarded with gradual expansion of graduate courses and research.

  • 1979 Paul Zia becomes head of department

    Paul Zia earned his B.S. in civil engineering from the National Chiao Tung University of China in 1949, his M.S. from the University of Washington in 1952, and Ph.D. from the University of Florida in 1960. He joined the civil engineering faculty at NC State in 1961.

  • DefaultPaul Z. Zia portrait


  • 1985 Construction Management degree program approved

    Mechanical contractors in North Carolina expressed interest in having a construction degree program at NC State that would provide a background in mechanical construction, and advocated for the creation of a Construction Management (CM) degree program that was distinct from the Construction Engineering degree. Less math and science was required in the CM degree, focusing instead on economics and business.

  • 1988 E. Downey Brill, Jr., becomes head of department


  • 1991 Center for Nuclear Power Plant Structures, Equipment and Piping founded

    Civil engineering professor Ajaya Gupta was founding director of the Center for Nuclear Power Plant Structures, Equipment and Piping at NCSU (1991-2001), a university-based research and professional organization focused on areas of structural safety and risk assessment for nuclear facilities-related systems, equipment and piping. It was later re-named the Center for Nuclear Energy Facilities and Structures. The center developed a worldwide reputation with up to 20 ... More

  • DefaultFirst Commercial-Size Nuclear Power Plant in the Southeast
  • 1995 CEC degree specialty renamed to include Construction Management degree option

    Based on feedback from students with double majors in Civil Engineering Construction (CEC) and Construction Management (CM), the Construction Management (CM) degree was discontinued. The CEC degree program was renamed Construction Engineering and Management (CEM).

  • 1996 Constructed Facilities Laboratory building opens

    Department laboratory space expands to occupy part of the Constructed Facilities Laboratory on Centennial Campus. The laboratory became a hub of collaboration between the Civil Engineering department and private and government entities, to develop and evaluate the performance of new products and innovative structural systems. The facility included an environmental chamber used to test large-scale structural components subjected to severe environmental conditions, ... More

  • DefaultConstructed Facilities Lab on Centennial Campus
  • 1997 Alumnus Johnnie Hooper Jones leads construction of Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lampur

    Alumni Johnnie Hooper Jones (BSCE ’53), Chairman of Board of J.A. Jones Inc., provided engineering leadership in construction of the Petronas Twin Towers in Kuala Lampur, Malaysia. Construction on the towers was completed in 1997. They were acknowledged by Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat as the tallest buildings in the world.


  • 2001 Department responds to Sept. 11 terrorist attacks

    Following the attacks on the Pentagon and the World Trade Center, the Department of Civil Engineering introduces new courses and research on the protection of civil infrastructure and high-risk transportation facilities in the face of terrorist attacks. Debra Laefer began teaching a policy-oriented course called “Protection of Critical Infrastructure and Populations from Terrorist Attack”; Dr. Laefer, John Stone, and Nagui Rouphail led research in transportation ... More

  • 2002 World Trade Center beam donated

    A portion of a steel beam recovered from the World Trade Center was donated to the department by David Griffin of D.H. Griffin Wrecking Company Inc. in Greensboro, NC, and Ronnie Stott (B.S. Civil Engineering, 1997), of the Raleigh office of Bovis-Lend Lease. Griffin led the demolition and recovery operations for Bovis on-site in New York City. The beam was placed on display in the lobby of Mann Hall.

  • 2003 Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering

    The Department of Civil Engineering is renamed the Department of Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering.

  • 2005 George F. List becomes head of department
  • 2006 New environmental lab facility opens in Broughton Hall

    5,200 square foot facility dedicated to environmental engineering research, supporting research programs in water and waste water treatment, contaminant transport and site remediation, solid waste engineering, and molecular microbial ecology.