Outstanding Senior Spotlight: Genevieve Burye

After a high school environmental science class sparked an interest in civil and environmental engineering, graduating senior Genevieve Burye pursued her passion at UC Davis. She reflects on the people and experiences that continued to deepen her commitment to engineering a better world for all.

Outstanding Senior Spotlight: Freesia Finn

From building a concrete canoe to serving as ASCE president, graduating civil and environmental engineering student Freesia Finn has gained valuable experience and invaluable friendships from her time at UC Davis.

CEE Undergraduate Team claims “Best Seismic Performance” honor at EERI Undergraduate Seismic Competition

We are proud to announce that our undergraduate team, who worked tirelessly since Fall 2023, saw their hard work pay off when they took home one of the coveted awards of the competition. The annual design competition, which was held in Seattle this year in conjunction with the Earthquake Engineering Research Institute (EERI) Annual Meeting, featured over 40 teams from around the world.

Professor Watkins to lead new US DOT Climate and Transportation Research Center at UC Davis

Under the leadership of Professor Kari Watkins, the UC Davis Institute of Transportation Studies won $1.7 million in research funding for a Climate Change and Transportation Research Center in a national competition funded by the US Department of Transportation (DOT). The Center will advance research and technologies to support the Nation’s clean energy goals, accelerate decarbonization of the transportation sector, strengthen the resilience of the Nation’s transportation infrastructure, and address environmental inequities created by the transportation system.

Nitin Kumar Receives the 2024 Postdoctoral Excellence Award

The UC Davis Postdoctoral Scholars Association has awarded Dr. Nitin Kumar with the 2024 Postdoctoral Excellence Award. The award recognizes the vital role that postdoctoral scholars play in supporting excellent research, mentoring, and outreach at UC Davis. Dr. Kumar focuses his research on engineering earth block construction for affordable, eco-efficient, and hazard-resistant dwellings. The recipients of the award received a certificate and cash prize and were invited to the 2024 Postdoctoral Research Symposium, which took place on April 24, 2024.  

In Memoriam: Dr. Karl Romstad

Dr. Karl Romstad, a beloved professor of civil engineering, passed away recently at the age of 83.

International Women’s Day Spotlight on UC Davis Women in Civil and Environmental Engineering

In honor of International Women’s Day on March 8, the University of California, Davis, College of Engineering recognizes women in engineering, their journey to and in the field, and how they promote a diverse, equitable and inclusive world.

Meet some remarkable women in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, and learn how they inspire inclusion in engineering.

CEE undergraduate students Isabella Lera and Jessica Lee won 2024 GeoVideo competition hosted by ASCE's GeoInstitute

Laura Luna (our Ph.D. student) mentored two CEE undergrad students, Isabella Lera, and Jessica Lee, as they prepared a submission for the 2024 GeoVideo competition hosted by ASCE's GeoInstitute. 

They were invited to attend GeoCongress in Vancouver to compete in the finals and were awarded top place.

Find their video submission here:

Professor Fabian Bombardelli Receives Honorary Degree: Doctor Honoris Causa

Professor Fabian Bombardelli has received an honorific degree as Doctor Honoris Causa from the National University of La Plata (UNLP), Argentina. This is the highest academic accolade from UNLP. Prof. Bombardelli is a world-leader in hydraulic modeling and environmental fluid mechanics, and he received this honorific during a ceremony at which he presented a lecture titled "Numerical Simulation of Air Entrainment in Stepped Spillways: From Engineering to Research." You can read more about his accomplishments and the impact of his work here (in Spanish). 

CEE Alumni Dr. Ahmad Hassan receives Reidar Bjorhovde Outstanding Young Professional Award from AISC

Dr. Ahmad Hassan was selected as the 2024 recipient of the Reidar Bjorhovde Outstanding Young Professional Award from the American Institute of Steel Construction (AISC). This prestigious award provides recipients with mentorship and connects them with leaders in the steel industry that will help to foster a broad look at the world of steel. Dr. Hassan graduated with his Ph.D.

Prof. Emeritus Pat Mokhtarian elected to National Academy of Engineering

Prof. Emeritus Patricia (Pat) Mokhtarian was elected to the 2024 class of the National Academy of Engineering for her contributions to "improved transportation systems planning and practice through quantifying human behavior." Prof. Mokhtarian is a world-leading researcher on travel behavior. Her work on the impact of telecommunications technology on travel behavior long predates the huge shift that has taken place over the last few years.

Prof. Amit Kanvinde and his PhD student Aditya Jhunjhunwala received 2024 Raymond C. Reese Research Prize

The American Society of Civil Engineers has awarded the 2024 Raymond C. Reese Research Prize to Amit Kanvinde, Professor at UC Davis’s Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) and Aditya Jhunjhunwala, his PhD student. The Raymond C. Reese Research Prize, created in 1970, is given to authors of an article that “describes a notable achievement in research related to structural engineering and which indicates how the research can be used,” according to the ASCE website.

UC Leadership Visits the Center for Geotechnical Modeling

UC Vice President for Research & Innovation Theresa Maldonado and UC Davis Vice Chancellor for Research visited the CEE Center for Geotechnical Modeling on January 23rd, where they learned about the 45 year history of the facility and plans to maintain the CGM as the premiere facility in the US for centrifuge-based research. The CGM hosts two centrifuges, one with a smaller 1-m radius and a massive 9-m radius. The high-gravity environment created when the centrifuges spin allows for investigation of a host of important problems in geotechnical engineering using scaled models.

Professors Alan Jenn and Alissa Kendall Helping to Shape National Climate Policy

In a groundbreaking shift from the past, the Fifth National Climate Assessment (NCA5) has comprehensively addressed some of the strategies and measures that are needed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and curb the worst effects of climate change. UC Davis Assistant Professor Alan Jenn and Professor Alissa Kendall both played significant roles in developing this comprehensive assessment.

Engineering Professor Wins Women & Philanthropy Impact Award

At commencement, she congratulates every student by name — then they ask for a hug.

She spearheaded the drive to establish an undergraduate environmental engineering major at UC Davis, knowing women are drawn to the field.

And in the words of her department chair: “She cares passionately about creating opportunities for others and institutionalizing the change needed to allow women and other underrepresented persons to thrive in engineering.”

Reimagining the Travel Safety Paradigm Through a Pyramid

Transportation systems play a huge role in how we get around. Unfortunately, this comes with a downside: an epidemic of traffic injuries and death. To get ahead of this, Prof. Kari Watkins and collaborators at Georgia Tech and the University of Minnesota have proposed a transformative new framework for traffic safety—the Safe Systems Pyramid. The Safe Systems Pyramid emphasizes the importance of a focus on improving the systems that govern our transportation infrastructure over trying to modify individual behavior.

CEE Professor Michele Barbato receives the Jonathon Burdette Brown Education

This year Professor Michele Barbato is being awarded with the "Jonathon Burdette Brown Education" Award from the ASCE Sacramento Chapter. The Sacramento Section of the American Society of Civil Engineers announce the outstanding individuals and remarkable projects that have earned recognition in this year's Sacramento Section ASCE Awards. These awards celebrate the dedication and hard work of those who are driving positive change in our city through civil engineering. Congratulations Michele!

Professor Ross Boulanger Named Ishihara Lecturer by ISSMGE TC203

Professor Ross Boulanger was named the 9th Ishihara Lecturer by the International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering's (ISSMGE) Technical Committee on Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering (TC203). This is a distinguished group of lecturers who have been instrumental in the geotechnical earthquake engineering field. Professor Boulanger will receive the award and give an award lecture at the 8th International Conference on Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering in Osaka, Japan in March 2024.

Professor Michele Barbato Selected as 2023 UC Davis Innovator of the Year

Professor Michele Barbato was selected as the UC Davis Innovator of the Year Award for his continued work with adobe as a nature-based solution for sustainable, climate-resilient earthen construction. For more information about Professor Barbato's award, read this article: Engineering Faculty Receive UC Davis Innovation Awards at 2023 Ceremony | College of Engineering. Congratulations Michele!

CEE Undergraduate Scholarship Awards Ceremony

On May 23rd the Civil & Environmental Engineering Undergraduate Awards and Scholarships for 2023-2024 held place on Ghausi Hall.

The department chair Chris Cappa, the vice chair for undergraduate studies Colleen Bronner, and Professor Jason DeJong gave the awards to the graduating seniors in recognition of their outstanding academic achievement.

For more information visit: Student Awards | Civil and Environmental Engineering (

May 2023 Graduate Student Spotlight: Katherine Cheng

Katherine Cheng is a Ph.D. candidate at UC Davis.

Read on to learn about Katherine's adventures up and down the West coast and her passion for machine learning in earthquake engineering.

Sashi Kunnath recognized as an ASCE Distinguished Member

Professor Sashi Kunnath was recently honored as a distinguished member of ASCE for his contributions to civil engineering, ASCE, and mentorship. Professor Kunnath's outstanding dedication to earthquake engineering and collapse analysis has been instrumental to the advancement of the field. More information about his work and recognition by ASCE can be found on the ASCE website. Congratulations Dr. Kunnath!

Professor Geoff Schladow Appears in NPR Weekend Edition

Professor Geoff Schladow, Director of the Tahoe Environmental Research Center, appeared in the recent NPR Weekend Edition Sunday to discuss the presence of zooplankton in Lake Tahoe. He was interviewed by Ayesha Rascoe about the role of the microorganisms in the lake and their importance to the ecosystem. The interview and transcript can be found on the NPR website

April 2023 Graduate Student Spotlight: Ivan Xiao

Ivan Xiao is a Ph.D. student at UC Davis. 

Read on to learn some words of wisdom from Ivan regarding the challenges of graduate school. 

    Tell us about yourself in few words?

My name is Ivan Xiao. I come from Guangzhou, China. I studied Transportation Engineering for my Bachelor's degree at Southeast University and completed my Master's degree in Civil and Environmental Engineering (CEE) at UC Davis. Currently, I am pursuing a Ph.D. in CEE.

CEE Professor Sashi Kunnath elected as a Distinguished Member of ASCE

Congratulations to CEE Professor Sashi Kunnath for being elected as a Distinguished Member of ASCE. He is one of only 12 inductees awarded this title this year out of a total membership of 143,000. Here are more details about the honor -

He now joins two other ASCE Distinguished Members in our department, Professor Jay Lund and Professor Levent Kavvas.

CEE Graduate Berkley Anderson receives the American Water Works Associations Academic Achievement Award

Congratulations to CEE graduate Berkley Anderson on being selected to receive the American Water Works Association's Second Place 2023 Academic Achievement Award for the best Masters Thesis. AWWA is the main professional society covering drinking water treatment and this is a competitive award category. The award will be presented at the AWWA Annual Conference and Exposition in Toronto, June 11-14, 2023, during the plenary session on Monday, June 12.

March 2023 Graduate Student Spotlight: Mohammad Rahman

Mohammad Rahman is a Ph.D. candidate at UC Davis working as a Graduate Student Researcher at the University of California Pavement Research Center (UCPRC). 

In this month's Graduate Student Spotlight, we'll be learning more about Mohammad and his research at UC Davis.

CEE Professor Katerina Ziotopoulou awarded the ISSMGE TC293 Young Researcher Award

Congratulations to CEE Professor Katerina Ziotopoulou on receiving the 2023 Young Researcher Award (under age 40) from the International Society of Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering's (ISSMGE) Technical Committee on Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering. The award was just announced, with Katerina scheduled to receive the award and give an award lecture at the 8th International Conference on Earthquake Geotechnical Engineering in Osaka, Japan, in March 2024.

Past award recipients and award details are at:

CEE Professor Emeritus Deb Niemeier awarded the 2023 Bower Award

Congratulations to CEE Professor Emeritus Deb Niemeier for her being awarded the 2023 Bower Award and Prize for Achievement in Science from the Franklin Institute! 

The Bower Award is a major prize, and Deb was honored "for pioneering the advancement and application of knowledge at the intersections among infrastructure, environment, public health, and equity through groundbreaking research on transportation systems and climate-related hazards."

February 2023 Graduate Student Spotlight: Patrick Cunningham

Patrick Cunningham (he/him) has been studying at UC Davis for 5 years, first completing his MS degree and now completing his Ph.D. 

In this month's Graduate Student Spotlight, we'll learn more about Patrick and his research at UC Davis.

Tell us about yourself in a few words.

Currently, I'm doing research in Berlin, DE. I love cooking and I am fascinated by the towering role of concrete in our global society.

Prof. Alissa Kendall co-authors landmark study showing how to shrink the lithium footprint of electrifying the transportation sector

CEE Professor Alissa Kendall, along with graduate students Kristi Dayemo and Margaret Slattery of the Energy Graduate Group, and colleagues at Providence College and the Climate + Community Project have released a groundbreaking new report showing the lithium footprint of transport decarbonization. Decarbonization strategies rely on battery electric vehicles (EVs). This will create an unprecedented demand for critical metals such as lithium used in their batteries. Large-scale mining for metals creates numerous environmental harms and has major impacts on surrounding communities. Prof.

UC Davis Researchers Explore Environmental Benefits of Soil-Stabilizing Microbes

Naturally occurring microbes could help stabilize the ground under buildings during earthquakes due to the way they reduce the water content in soils, according to new research. One existing approach to stabilizing liquefaction-prone soils known as grouting is to inject concrete into the soil under vulnerable structures to cement the ground together.

January 2023 Graduate Student Spotlight: Samantha Sharp

Samantha Sharp (she/her) is a fifth-year Ph.D. Student in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a focus on Water Resource Engineering. 

In this Graduate Student Spotlight, we'll learn more about Samantha's journey and her research at UC Davis. 

Still recovering from COVID-19, US public transit tries to get back on track

U.S. commuters take approximately ten billion trips on public transit each year, but the industry is still recovering from the hits it took during the COVID-19 pandemic. Kari Watkins, associate professor of civil and environmental engineering at UC Davis, was interviewed by The Conversation to discuss what cities can do to increase public transportation ridership and how people can make better use of this environmentally friendly mode of transportation.

December 2022 Graduate Student Spotlight: Sampat Kedarisetty

Sampat Kedarisetty (he/him) is a sixth-year Ph.D. student in Civil and Environmental Engineering with a focus on Pavement Management.

In this Graduate Student Spotlight, we'll learn more about Sampat's journey and his research at UC Davis. 

Tell us about yourself.

I'm originally from India and came to UC Davis for my Ph.D. I'm also newly married to the love of my life who I met here and am a cat-dad.

Professor Jay Lund elected a 2022 American Geophysical Union Fellow

Dr. Jay Lund was elected as a 2022 American Geophysical Union Fellow for his continued contributions and achievements in the Earth sciences. This prestigious recognition is awarded to top innovators in the field, and Fellows are selected because they embody the AGU values of equity, diversity, and integrity in the sciences. We are incredibly proud of Dr. Lund and the impact that he has in our own community and beyond. Congratulations Dr. Lund!

Professor Barbato received the 2022 Graduate Program Advising and Mentoring Award from Graduate Studies

Dr. Michele Barbato was selected by UC Davis Graduate Studies to receive a 2022 Graduate Program Advising and Mentoring Award for outstanding service in advising and mentoring graduate students at the program level. Congratulations Dr. Barbato for your vital role in mentoring the academic and professional development of graduate students and postdoctoral scholars at the University of California, Davis!

Investigating Bridges Under Pressure

Scientists at the UC Davis Center for Geotechnical Modeling have compiled the most detailed experimental data yet seen on how liquefaction-induced downdrag can add to the structural load applied to a pile foundation during earthquake shaking.

Professor Heather Bischel received the NSF Early Career Award

Congratulation to Professor Heather Bischel for her NSF CAREER award, which was just announced yesterday! The award is titled "PFAS-BioAction: Innovative treatment of municipal solid waste organics through insect-mediated bioprocessing and sequestration of poly- and perfluoroalkyl substances." 

Professor Barbato Recipient of the 2021 ASCE Outstanding Reviewer Award

Dr. Michele Barbato was awarded the 2021 ASCE Outstanding Reviewer Award for the Journal of Composites for Construction. This award is given annually to reviewers selected by the ASCE journals’ editors for their exemplary contributions to voluntary peer review. The Outstanding Reviewer Award was established in 2009 by the Journals Division of ASCE to recognize the altruistic contributions of dedicated reviewers. 

Prof. Michele Barbato and PhD Student Diogo Zignago selected for Editor's Choice for the ASCE Journal of Composites for Construction

Professor Barbarto along with CEE Ph.D. Student Diogo Zignago, who co-authored the paper “Reliability-Based Calibration of New Design Procedure for Reinforced Concrete Columns under Simultaneous Confinement by Fiber-Reinforced Polymers and Steel” ( has been selected as Editor’s Choice for 2022’s 3rd issue of the ASCE Journal of Composites for Construction. 

Welcome Professor Watkins!

The Department of Civil & Environmental Engineering at UC Davis is excited to have Prof. Kari E. Watkins join our department as an Associate Professor. Prof. Watkins is a leading expert in transit, whose research contributes to the goal of expanding mobility options by improving transit, walking, bicycling, and other alternatives to driving. Her work supports societal efforts to reduce the climate impacts of transportation and improve transportation equity.

Professor Jay Lund Featured in The New Yorker

Reporter David Owen interviewed CEE Professor Jay Lund and WFCB Professor Emeritus Peter Moyle for a feature about the Sacramento River Delta and how best to protect the freshwater that millions of people depend on for drinking and agriculture. The piece covers the industrialization of the Delta, conservation issues like the Delta smelt, land subsidence, levee failures, and more. You can read the full article here.

CEE Alumna Recognized at Fresno State as a Promising New Faculty Member

Professor Kimberly Stillmaker was recognized with the Fresno State 2022 Provost Award for Promising New Faculty. Prof. Stillmaker graduated from UC Davis in 2013 with a master's in structural engineering and in 2016 with a Ph.D. in structural engineering. She currently teaches at Fresno State and researches the seismic performance of steel and timber structural elements. Congratulations, Prof. Stillmaker! Go Ags!

UC Davis Alumnus Wins 2022 Stockholm Water Prize

Professor Emeritus Wilfried Brutsaert was awarded the 2022 Stockholm Water Prize for his groundbreaking work on quantifying terrestrial evaporation and its role in the energy balance of Earth. His work has allowed for accurate estimations of evolving precipitation levels, along with new ways of understanding groundwater storage. Professor Brutsaert's work is especially important given the climate crisis.

Professor Boris Jeremic Publishes Book Through the UN-IAEA

Professor Boris Jeremic and his colleagues Alain Pecker and James J. Johnson have published a book on seismic soil-structure interaction analysis in the design and assessment of nuclear interactions. His work is printed through the United Nations' International Atomic Energy Agency and is summarized as follows:

CEE Graduate Student Selected for Inaugural AGU Program

Zoe Kanavas, an MSc/Ph.D. candidate in Water Resources Engineering, has been honored for her outstanding work through the American Geophysical Union. She was selected to join the first cohort of AGU's Local Science Partners program, which empowers ambassador AGU members to build sustainable partnerships with their local policymakers. Ambassadors will receive skills-building workshops and have the opportunity to travel to Washington, D.C. to visit Congress members. Congratulations, Zoe!

AISC 2021 T. R. Higgins Lecture Hosted at UC Davis on March 11

The department is honored to be hosting Dr. Amit Varma as he delivers his 2021 T. R. Higgins Lecture "SpeedCore and Steel-Concrete Composite Construction: The Best of Both Worlds." This lecture will be held from 4-5 pm on March 11, 2022, in 1003 Giedt Hall. There will be a reception after the event.

Professor Dan Sperling Elected to the National Academy of Engineering

The National Academy of Engineering (NAE) announced in a press release on Feb. 9 that Professor Dan Sperling has been elected as a member of the 2022 class of the NAE for leadership and outstanding entrepreneurial contributions in transportation energy, advancing alternative energy policies and promoting government-industry-university collaborations.

CEE Faculty and Students Publish Op-Ed on COVID Wastewater Analysis

In a continuation of the Bischel team's work on wastewater analysis with Healthy Davis Together, Hannah Safford, Karen Shapiro, and Professor Bischel published an op-ed in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. The article, titled Opinion: Wastewater analysis can be a powerful public health tool—if it’s done sensibly, can be found here. Congratulations, Hannah and Professor Bischel!

Professor Michele Barbato's Paper Selected As ASCE Journal of Bridge Engineering Editor's Choice

The paper “Experimental investigation of postearthquake vertical load-carrying capacity of scoured reinforced concrete pile group bridge foundations” has been selected as Editor’s Choice for 2021’s 12th issue of the ASCE Journal of Bridge Engineering. This paper was co-authored by CEE Professor Michele Barbato and is the result of an ongoing research collaboration with Tongji University. Congratulations, Professor Barbato!

UC Davis Live Podcast this Thursday, 9/30, at 11am: Mitigating Wildfire Hazards for Homes and Communities

 Fire has always been part of the Western landscape, but the fire season gets longer and more severe every year. So far this year, California has seen four of the largest wildfires in its history, and the Dixie Fire, the second-largest in state history, is still burning after two months. 

Fire is part of our future. What can we do to protect homes, neighborhoods and communities and make them more resilient to fire hazards? Hear from two UC Davis experts on these and related questions Sept. 30. 

Professor Amit Kanvinde Received 2022 AISC Award

Congratulations Professor Amit Kanvinde for receiving the 2022 American Institute of Steel Construction T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award. This award recognizes outstanding researchers whose technical papers made outstanding contribution to the literature on fabricated structural steel. 

Each year, AISC's T.R. Higgins Lectureship Award recognizes an outstanding lecturer and author whose technical paper or papers, published during the eligibility period, are considered an outstanding contribution to the engineering literature on fabricated structural steel.

Professor Sabbie Miller Recipient of Graduate Program Advising and Mentoring Award

Miller received glowing nomination letters. 

Mentorship and advising are a critical component to graduate student success and this award celebrates those individuals who provide outstanding service in this area. Graduate programs nominated faculty members who displayed outstanding excellence in advising and mentoring of their graduate students. As part of the nomination process, these Graduate programs highlighted faculty for their service to the program, commitment to advising and mentoring, and positive impact on graduate students and colleagues.

Emeritus professor, Deb Niemeier, elected to the American Philosophical Society

The American Philosophical Society Welcomes New Members for 2021. Election to the American Philosophical Society honors extraordinary accomplishments in all fields. The APS is unusual among learned societies because its Membership is composed of top scholars from a wide variety of academic disciplines.

Professor Emeritus Deb Niemeier was selected as a member of Class 1 Mathematical and Physical Sciences. 

Report by University of California and CalEPA Featured CEE Faculty

Decarbonizing California Transportation by 2045 Report to State Outlines Policy Pathways to Meet the Zero-Carbon Time Crunch

UC Davis News and Media Relations recently highlighted the research contributions of department faculty members Austin Brown, Dan Sperling, and grad group member Susan Handy for their work on the "Driving California’s Transportation Emissions to Zero" report. 

A sample of the article below:

Professor Katerina Ziotopoulou Awarded NSF CAREER Award

Katerina Ziotopoulou, an Assistant Professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering recipient of National Science Foundation Early Career Award. She was granted a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER Award of more than $500,000 for her research in soil liquefaction.

In Case You Missed It

Over the quarter several members of the department have been recognized in various news outlets for their cutting edge research. 

Department Spotlight: Kanotha Kamau-Devers

Fall spotlight on award-winning doctoral candidate and mentor

Kanotha Kamau-Devers, a doctoral candidate working with Prof. Sabbie Miller, is currently researching composites of bio-renewable polymers and natural fibers designed to offer low environmental impact alternatives to certain contemporary construction materials.

Geotechnical Engineering Trailblazer: Professor Emeritus Izzat (Ed) Idriss

An internationally-recognized leader in the field of soil mechanics and foundation engineering, civil engineer Izzat (Ed) Idriss, professor emeritus of civil and environmental engineering, has influenced the construction of dams, nuclear power plants, office buildings, hospitals, and bridges around the world.

Holly Oldroyd selected for the NAE's 2020 US Frontiers of Engineering Symposium

Washington, DC, June 23, 2020 —

Eighty-five of the nation’s brightest early-career engineers have been selected to take part in the National Academy of Engineering’s (NAE) 26th annual US Frontiers of Engineering (USFOE) symposium. Engineers who are performing exceptional research and technical work in a variety of disciplines will come together for the two-and-a-half day event. The participants -- from industry, academia, and government -- were nominated by fellow engineers or organizations.

Awards bestowed upon Laura Hernandez-Bassal

Laura Hernandez-Bassal, PE, is a current structural and earthquake engineering Ph.D. candidate at UC Davis. Recently, she was awarded fellowships from the ACI Foundation and ASCE. 

The ACI Foundation is a non-profit subsidiary of ACI that promotes progress, innovation, and collaboration in the concrete industry through strategic investments in research, scholarship, and ideas. 

The ACI Foundation awarded Hernandez-Bassal the ACI Presidents' Fellowship. 

Barbato awarded the 2020 Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize

Professor Michele Barbato has been awarded the 2020 Walter L. Huber Civil Engineering Research Prize for “his outstanding research in structural engineering and engineering mechanics, with emphasis on finite element response sensitivity analysis, seismic response steel-concrete composite systems, seismic pounding mitigation, performance-based hurricane engineering and hurricane hazard mitigation, nonstationary stochastic dynamics, multi-hazard performance-based engineering, and sustainable construction materials.”

NSF CAREER Award: Martinez

Alejandro Martinez, assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, has received a CAREER award from the National Science Foundation’s Faculty Early Career Development Program, for his proposal, “Soil Penetration Through Bioinspired Stress State Manipulation.”

The grant is worth up to $500,000 over five years. Martinez studies bioinspired geotechnics, a field that looks to biological organisms for inspiration to solve problems in geotechnical engineering.

Bruce West Honored by Chancellor May

University of California, Davis, Chancellor Gary S. May announced Feb. 7 he will award the UC Davis Medal to alumnus Bruce West, chair of the UC Davis Foundation Board and a member of the Chancellor’s Board of Advisors.

The chancellor made the surprise announcement at a foundation board meeting this morning. “I’m pleased to say that the 2020 recipient of the UC Davis Medal is right here in the room,” May said as he turned to West.


James Cheney Obituary

Professor James Cheney passed away on Nov. 22, 2019, just before Thanksgiving.  He was one of the first faculty hired in the Civil Engineering in 1962 and remained with the faculty until his retirement.  Please follow the link here to read more about his life, both personal and professional. 

ASCE/SEI Symposium: Bay Area Resilience on 30th Anniversary of Loma Prieta Earthquake

Professor Brian Maroney speaker on panel at ASCE/SEI Symposium 

Many UCD students and alumni attended the ASCE/SEI San Francisco Chapter hosted a symposium on resilience to mark the 30th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake. The speaker panel consisted of representatives from BART, Caltrans, EBMUD, City of Oakland, and the San Francisco Office of Resilience and Capital Planning. This event presented a unique opportunity to learn about the resiliency efforts of major building and infrastructure agencies in the Bay Area. 

A Building Legacy - Jeff Hoopes


His grandfather was a UC Berkeley civil engineering graduate. But UC Davis ran in his family, too: As a little boy, Hoopes actually lived on the UC Davis campus with his family while his father pursued his Ph.D. in Russian history. After his dad’s hiring as the first professor at Eureka’s College of the Redwoods, Hoopes grew up in Humboldt County enjoying his math studies and participating in summertime survey-crew internships.

Modeling small cigar smoke in the lungs

Everyone knows cigarettes are bad for you. Much research has been done and because of that, legislators have put a lot of sales restrictions and taxes on them. This is why companies are developing new products that deliver nicotine such as vapes, small cigars and cigarillos that have sugary flavors to addict a new generation of users.

These newer products have really caught on, especially with young people, who are adopting them faster than they can be researched or regulated.

Two CEE Faculty Receive NSF CAREER Awards

Civil and Environmental Engineering Assistant Professors Holly Oldroyd and Verónica Morales each received the National Science Foundation's CAREER Award for their research in environmental engineering.

Lake Tahoe Clarity Level Bounces Back

A return to more normal weather and streamflow conditions in 2018 saw Lake Tahoe’s annual clarity value improve dramatically to 70.9 feet. This represents a 10.5-foot increase over the 2017 value. That is according to a report of Lake Tahoe clarity released by the UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center.

Supporting the Next Wave of Water Leaders

UC Davis professor and director of the Center for Watershed Sciences Jay Lund explains the important role UC Davis engineers will play in solving water problems that plague societies across the globe.

How Fast Are Ice Shelves Melting?

A small group of scientists and doctoral students from the University of California, Davis, recently returned from Antarctica, where they became the first group to collect turbulence measurements from an underwater glider beneath an ice shelf. 

Maureen Kinyua: Waste Not

As an undergraduate physics major, Maureen Kinyua discovered her passion for science—combined with a sincere interest in helping others—could lead to a fruitful career in engineering.

UC Davis Solar Decathlon Team Receives Excellence in Structural Engineering Award

On June 12, the UC Davis Solar Decathlon team, led by Professor Frank Loge in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, received the Excellence in Structural Engineering Award from the Structural Engineers Association of Central California for their work designing and building OurH2Ouse for the 2017 U.S. Department of Energy’s Solar Decathlon competition.

CEE Alumni Spotlight: Water Pioneer Jeffery Szytel

Jeffery Szytel (’98, civil and environmental engineering), is founder and CEO of Water Systems Consulting, Inc. (WSC), a full service civil and environmental engineering consulting firm that specializes in providing innovative One Water solutions to public agency clients throughout the western United States.

Student Spotlight: Ann Willis

Ann Willis, a first-year Ph.D. student in civil and environmental engineering, recently achieved a milestone typically reserved for a senior researcher or faculty member: she secured a $492,000 grant through the state of California Wildlife Conservation Board for studying reconciliation ecology.

Controlling Invasive Shrimp to Improve Water Clarity in Lake Tahoe

A University of California, Davis research team led by civil and environmental engineering professors Geoff Schladow and Alex Forrest, along with environmental science and policy professor Steve Sadro, is launching a new project this month to test and optimize a strategy to improve water clarity in Emerald Bay and Lake Tahoe.

Professor John Harvey Presents Rasmus S. Nordal Keynote Address

John Harvey, professor in Civil and Environmental Engineering and director of the UC Pavement Research Center (UCPRC), presented the Rasmus S. Nordal keynote address to more than 400 delegates at the 10th Conference on the Bearing Capacity of Roads, Railways and Airfields in Athens, Greece, on June 28, 2017.