Edmund Titus Cranch ’45, Ph.D. ’51, who served as dean
of the College of Engineering from 1972-78, died Feb. 4 at age 91
Cranch joined the Cornell engineering faculty in 1951 as an
assistant professor of mechanics and served two terms as chair
of the Department of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics. He
was named Associate Dean of Graduate Studies and Research
in 1967. In 1970, he was one of the first faculty members elected
to serve on the university’s board of trustees, and in 1972 he
was named dean of the College of Engineering.
He left Cornell to become the 12th president of Worcester
Polytechnic Institute from 1978 to 1985. In 1985, Cranch
was elected national president of the American Society for
Engineering Education, which honored him with an ASEE
fellowship in 1993.
At Cornell, Cranch worked with alumnus Lester B. Knight
’29 to construct a specially outfitted laboratory. Today Duffield
Hall houses the Cornell NanoScale Science and Technology
Facility. He also served Cornell as chair of the Advisory
Committee on Financial Planning and the Committee on Special
Cranch earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical
engineering in 1945. After graduating from Cornell, he was
commissioned an ensign and served as an engineering officer.
He earned his master’s degree in mechanical engineering
through the U.S. Navy’s wartime V- 12 officer training
program. Cranch then worked briefly for Bell Labs as an
electromechanical design and development staff member before
enrolling as a graduate student at Cornell. His Ph.D. was in
mechanics, mathematics and applied physics. He was a fellow
of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, a member of
Tau Beta Pi honorary engineering fraternity, president of the
Cornell chapter of Sigma Xi and a member of the Society of
Experimental Stress Analysis.
Fred Kulhawy, professor emeritus of civil and
environmental engineering in the College of Engineering, died
May 12 at age 71.
Kulhawy joined the faculty of the School of Civil and
Environmental Engineering in 1976 as an associate professor. In
1980, he joined Cornell’s graduate faculty in geological sciences.
By 1981, he had become a full professor.
During his 40-year academic career, Kulhawy taught a
wide range of courses in geotechnical engineering, including
basic to advanced soil mechanics, engineering geology, basic
to advanced foundation engineering, retaining structures
and slopes, rock mechanics and engineering, embankment
dam engineering, tunnel engineering, case studies and
reliability-based foundation design. He supervised the annual
Master of Engineering geotechnical design project 17 times.
Oriented toward design and professional practice, his courses
emphasized a strong grounding in the basics and developing a
sound thought process.
He was a prolific researcher throughout his academic
career, with sponsors ranging from various government
agencies to public and private companies, and he supervised 54
master’s and doctoral theses. Authoring or co-authoring more
than 370 publications, Kulhawy and his students have greatly
influenced geotechnical practice.
Among his many awards: distinguished member of the
American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE); the ASCE’s
Norman Medal; and the Karl Terzaghi Award, the ASCE
Geo-Institute career accolade for eminence in geotechnical
Prior to his academic career, Kulhawy was a project
engineer with Storch Engineers, a small geotechnical consulting
firm, where he worked on a series of challenging projects.
They included the design of a major section of the New Jersey
Turnpike expansion, the foundations for the Boston Aquarium,
rehabilitation of portions of the Jefferson Memorial and various
bridge foundations along interstate highways in Connecticut
and New Jersey.
ENGINEERING PROFESSOR EMERITUS DIES AT 71
FORMER ENGINEERING DEAN DIES AT 91