Carnegie Mellon University
February 20, 2015

American Society of Civil Engineers Honors CMU’s James H. Garrett, Jr. and Mitchell Small

By Tara Moore / 412-268-9673

The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Pittsburgh Chapter has recognized Carnegie Mellon University’s College of Engineering Dean James H. Garrett, Jr. and Professor Mitchell Small as its 2014 Civil Engineer of the Year and Professor of the Year, respectively.

James H. Garrett, Jr.: Civil Engineer of the Year

Jim GarrettGarrett joined CMU’s Civil and Environmental Engineering Department faculty in 1990, was promoted to full professor in 1996, head of Civil and Environmental Engineering in 2006, and dean of the College of Engineering in January 2013.

Garrett’s research and teaching have focused on applying advanced computing and information technologies to civil engineering problems. His research interests have included applications of sensors and sensor systems to civil infrastructure condition assessment; mobile hardware/software systems for field applications; representations and processing strategies to support the usage of engineering codes, standards and specifications; and knowledge-based decision support systems. He holds two patents and is the author of more than 250 technical publications.

During his tenure as dean, the college has created a new strategic plan, and launched a number of new research initiatives in areas such as advanced manufacturing, soft robotics and smart infrastructure. He also has led new efforts in communications, faculty development and educational programs for innovation and entrepreneurship.

Garrett has received numerous awards, including the Alexander von Humboldt Research Prize in 2012; the CIT-ICES Steven J. Fenves Award for Systems Research in 2007; the ASCE Computing in Civil Engineering Award in 2006; the ASCE Journal of Computing in Civil Engineering Best Paper Award in 2002; the Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship in 1994; the ASCE Wellington Prize in 1993; the IABSE Prize from the International Association of Bridge and Structural Engineers in 1992; the Moisseiff Award from the ASCE Journal of Structural Engineering in 1990; and an NSF Presidential Young Investigator Award in 1989.

For his professional accomplishments, research contributions and professional service to ASCE, Garrett was elected an ASCE Fellow in 2009.

Mitchell Small: Professor of the Year

Mitchell SmallSmall, a professor in the departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Engineering and Public Policy, has been teaching at Carnegie Mellon since 1982. He was recognized for his engaging style in teaching students how quantitative analysis can bring deep insight and predictive ability to engineering problems, design, and policy formulation and analysis. He equips students with quantitative tools in statistical modeling and process modeling that enable them to excel in practice, academia and government.

Small advises an average of 10 undergraduates and 10 graduate students each year. His 50 Ph.D. and thesis master’s degree students have gone on to careers in professional practice, academia and government.

Small’s book, titled “Integrated Environmental Modeling: Pollutant Transport, Fate and Risk in the Environment,” has been adopted by instructors in environmental engineering and science programs across the U.S.

He is widely recognized as a national leader in the development of integrated assessment for civil-environmental engineering decision-making. His path-breaking research has focused on building and applying models that link contaminant fate and transport, human behavior, exposure and risk to inform engineering decisions as well as policy and regulation formation.

Small's work has significantly advanced stochastic approaches in environmental engineering modeling, where the need is great because of the variability in the natural and engineered systems of interest. Furthermore, he has linked the results of stochastic modeling directly to civil-environmental engineering decision-making.