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Alumni gather to celebrate Industrial and Systems Engineering’s 50th anniversary

Anna Hartenbach | Jul 20, 2018
ISE 50th Anniversary

Alumni gather to celebrate Industrial and Systems Engineering’s 50th anniversary

Anna Hartenbach | Jul 20, 2018

Russ College alumni reminisced and looked to the future with faculty, staff and students at the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering’s 50th anniversary celebration on July 14 in Athens, Ohio.

More than 70 Bobcats commemorate the department, established in 1968 by Professor Emeritus and former Department Chair Robert Williams Sr. and four other faculty members. Attendees enjoyed student work displays, networking, campus tours and a formal banquet in the Baker University Center Ballroom.

“The event provided an opportunity for us to reflect how far the department has come and consider where we may want to go in the future,” said event organizer and Russ Professor Robert Judd, who served as chair from 2005 through June.

In addition to Judd, all former living department chairs from the last 50 years attended the event.

Brad Hollingsworth, BSISE ’01, MS ’03, assistant director for the Center for Innovation and Data Services at the Muskingum Valley Educational Service Center, said industrial and systems engineering is often misunderstood or questioned by the general public because other engineering disciplines display more tangible project outcomes like bridges and rockets.

“Dr. Judd shared a glimpse of the value the department provides G.E. Aircraft Engines, which impact nearly 50 percent of all aircraft,” he said. “We acknowledged and celebrated the long-standing tradition of contributions and achievements like this.”

Dale Masel, current chair and professor, who joined OHIO 20 years ago, said the anniversary is an accomplishment for the department and engineering education.

“Some other universities in Ohio have merged or discontinued their programs over the past several years, so the fact that our program is going strong and growing is a very satisfying feeling,” Masel said.

The Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering now has four degree programs, including one online, a research program, 10 full time faculty and about 300 enrolled students.