Visualizing 125 Years of Vanderbilt Engineering

Machine Shop

The School of Engineering machine shop in the late 1890s or early 1900s. Instructor John Ashford is standing near the center, and alumnus E.F. Scott, BE'03, sits in an early automobile.


During World War I, the U.S. War Department formed Student Army Training Corps (SATC) on campuses, including Vanderbilt.

Surveying Camp 1928

Dean Fred J. Lewis established a surveying camp at Bon Air Mountain in 1927. The camp tradition continued for decades. Here, in 1928, are, from left, instructor E.L. Spain, Lewis, Alex Bristow (BE'31), Al Hutchinson, Graham Hampton, Bobby Crockett (BE'31), Hardee Kilgore (E'31), and Mark Bradford (BE'30).

Fred Lewis

This Nashville Banner cartoon paid tribute to then Dean Fred. J. Lewis


The first woman to graduate from the School of Engineering was Vera Jane Jones Mackey, Ba'44, BE'45.

Mechanical Engineering

In 1950, the School of Engineering's new Engineering Building was completed. It later was named Jacobs Hall.

Bent Dedication

Chancellor Alexander Heard (from left) joined students Paul Rice, BE'66, and Roger Daniel, BE'66, at the dedication of the engineering honor society Tau Beta Pi's Bent in 1965.

Olin Hall

Olin Hall was added to the engineering campus in 1974. It housed the chemical engineering, engineering science, and materials science and engineering departments.

1982 Canoe

Vanderbilt engineering students have long participated in the ASCE National Concrete Canoe Competition. This is the 1985 team; the tradition continues with students today.

Graduation Flag

Dean Kenneth J. Galloway, faculty and soon-to-be engineering graduates at Commencement 2000.

Engineering Week

In 2007, one of the popular Engineering Week (E-Week) competitions was engineering a way to package and protect a raw egg during a drop from the top of Featheringill Hall. FedEx sponsored the project.

Engineering Week

Civil engineering undergraduates still learn surveying skills. These students surveyed Library Lawn in 2008.


The 2010 John R. and Donna S. Hall Engineering Lecture was given by the Craig E. Philip Professor of Engineering George Hornberger, University Distinguished Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering and Earth and Environmental Science. A world-renowned water expert, Hornberger drew a crowd with his talk on water and energy conservation.

Engineering Week

Vanderbilt engineers throw themselves whole-heartedly into E-Week 2011. The Adams Atrium was the site of a competition to craft the tallest paper tower that could hold a soda can for 10 seconds. The contest was sponsored by ASME.

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