CEE Emeriti Faculty Share Memories, Advice
George Tchobanoglous, Professor Emeritus
"My fondest memory is the comradery of the faculty, especially as we were seeking to develop the department and its identity. Because we were a new department, we were able to develop the curriculum in environmental engineering in our own vision. We were leaders in applied research in getting treatment technologies approved for use in California including effluent filtration, constructed wetlands, individual onsite systems, and UV disinfection, all of which have benefitted the citizens of California. My advice to current engineering students or recent graduates is, along with a sound understanding of engineering fundamentals, it is equally important to hone your writing skills. The best way to do that is to write, write, and continue to write at every opportunity."
Patricia L. Mokhtarian, Professor Emerita
"With 23 years in CEE at UC Davis, it is hard to choose a 'fondest' memory -- I literally cannot think of one that is not fond. I couldn't have asked for more supportive colleagues, and the department not only made possible, but actively facilitated, the career of my dreams. Some of the work I’m proudest of is documenting that (to a certain extent) humans need to travel for its own sake -- that we are hard-wired to move, to explore, to strive. I’m also proud of demonstrating that information and communication technologies tend to increase travel more than they substitute for it (it was not a popular answer, but one we needed to know), and showing that it is important to take attitudinal predispositions into account if we are to properly evaluate the impacts of policies on travel behavior. Otherwise, we are likely to overestimate the beneﬁts of those policies. I advise students and new graduates to read widely -- the better informed you are about your profession, the more valuable an employee (and member of society) you will be, and the more diverse the "non-professional" inputs you expose yourself to, the better a person you will be. Learn to write well -- it will always give you a competitive advantage. Practice concentration on what's important to you (family, work, spiritual growth), turning off all electronic devices and other distractions for at least an hour at a time, regularly!"
Karl Romstad, Professor Emeritus
"The fondest time of my time in CEE was the amazingly cooperative relations of most of the faculty all the way from 1967 to 2000 (when I retired)! We also had staff who were very friendly and helpful! Most of the Department faculty really did try to help all of the different areas to be successful. Department Chairs starting with Don Brush in 1964 always were positive and set a model for all of us. All around the College of Engineering faculty wished their departments were as cooperative as CEE! I received several College and Campus Teaching Awards, the Academic Senate Distinguished Teaching Award was probably the most recognized. In research I am most proud of collaborating with Structural, Geotechnical and Structural Mechanics faculty members."