Samuel Graham Named New School Chair for Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering

April 23, 2018

Dr. Samuel Graham Jr. has been appointed as the new Eugene C. Gwaltney Jr. School Chair, George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering (ME), in the College of Engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology, effective July 1, 2018. Graham is currently the Rae S. and Frank H. Neely Professor in the Woodruff School and the associate chair for research.

“Sam’s background, experiences and outstanding reputation in fields critical to the school make him ideally suited and well-prepared to lead mechanical engineering during the next era,” said Dr. Steve McLaughlin, dean of the College of Engineering and Southern Company chair. “He is an ideal match for the School’s high aspirations both nationally and internationally. Sam is an accomplished researcher who understands the needs of industry, national laboratories and corporations who look to our School of Mechanical Engineering for scientific leadership and innovation.”

 “I am honored to have the opportunity to serve as the next Chair of the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering,” Graham said. “I am looking forward to working with our excellent students, faculty, staff and alumni to continue the outstanding contributions that the Woodruff School has made to the nation. This is an exciting time for the fields of mechanical and nuclear engineering. We will continue to be innovative in the way we educate our students, while also positioning ourselves to address some of the most important technological problems facing our society.”

Dr. Graham earned his B.S. from Florida State University, and his M.S. and Ph.D. in mechanical engineering from Georgia Tech. He joined the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering in September 2003 after spending time at Sandia National Laboratories and Stanford University. Graham also holds a joint appointment with the Oak Ridge National Laboratories.

Dr. Graham is the recipient of an NSF CAREER Award; is an ASME Fellow; a member of the Air Force Scientific Advisory Board; and a member of the Engineering Science Research Foundation Advisory Board for Sandia National Labs. He was recently named a Distinguished Visiting Professor at Nagoya University in Japan, working with Nobel Prize Winner in Physics, Professor Hiroshi Amano.

His research group is considered one of the top two in the world for thermal analysis of GaN electronics. Graham has a strong, interdisciplinary record of accomplishment in the characterization and reliability of wide bandgap and flexible electronics. He is currently a co-principal investigator for a Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative sponsored by the Air Force Office of Scientific Research. He has published more than 140 peer-reviewed journal articles and raised more than $14M in research funding.

The College of Engineering at Georgia Tech is the largest of its kind in the country with more than 12,000 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled. The College ranks in the top five in undergraduate and graduate engineering education by U.S. News and World Report.

The George W. Woodruff School for Mechanical Engineering is the oldest department at Georgia Tech and first offered degrees in 1888.  Today, the Woodruff School offers three bachelor of science degrees, six master of science degrees, and two doctor of philosophy degrees.

Samuel Graham headshot

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