WPI Appoints R.H. White Professor

Contact: WPI Media Relations, 508-831-5616

WORCESTER, Mass. -- Malcolm H. Ray of Iowa City, Iowa, an assistant professor of civil engineering at the University of Iowa, will join the WPI faculty as the White Professor of Civil Engineering on Jan. 1, 1999. He will hold the rank of associate professor.

The White Family Distinguished Professorship was established in 1987 by Leonard White '41 and his wife, Ann, and their son, David H. White '75 and his wife, Shirley. The men are the second- and third-generation owners of R.H. White Construction Co. Inc. The Auburn, Mass., company, established 75 years ago by Leonard's father Ralph H White, maintains field offices in Lowell and Yarmouth, Mass., and in Merrimack, N.H. Its construction, underground and real restate divisions build everything from water and sewage treatment plants and gas and water lines to buildings, sports arenas and subdivisions; the mechanical division maintains water and sewage pumping stations all over New England. Ralph White died in 1975. That year, his son and grandson established a scholarship fund in his name to provide financial aid to deserving students; preference is given first to children of R.H. White Co. employees, then to Worcester-area residents.

Malcolm Ray, the newest White professor, earned a B.S. in civil engineering at the University of Vermont, an M.S. in civil engineering at Carnegie Mellon University, and a Ph.D. in civil engineering at Vanderbilt University. His areas of expertise include design and analysis of impact-resistant structures and crashworthiness of transportation vehicles, impact mechanics, nonlinear dynamic finite element analysis, nonlinear dynamics, and full-scale crash testing and structural design. Before joining the University of Iowa faculty he was an onsite support contractor for the Federal Highway Administration's Design Concepts Research Division in McLean, Va., and president of Momentum Engineering in Chattanooga, Tenn., where he provided roadside safety research and consulting services.

An independent technological university founded in 1865, WPI is renowned for its project-based educational program.