There is no doubt about it, the last six months have been difficult. We've had to move our teaching and examinations online, conduct graduations virtually, close our research laboratories and have lost dear colleagues. 

In March the Department lost Dr Arun Kamtekar, who had devoted the last 40 years to the University. He joined in 1980 and spent the next 25 years as a lecturer in Structural Engineering. After retiring in 2005, he continued as an Honorary Research Fellow and was still involved in teaching students in the Department of Civil Engineering. The University has created an online Book of Condolence in which people can pay their respects.

That said, it has been a very successful year. Colleagues in Geotechnical Engineering led by Professor Chris Rogers have had their research fighting COVID-19 featured on the BBC ( Professor Ian Jefferson's ARLI (Alternative Raw Materials with Low Impact) programme has been renewed. It continues to help SME's gain added value from the use of raw and waste materials.  

Drs Pedro Martinez-Vazquez (Head of Education for Civil Engineering) and Asaad Faramarzi were both promoted to Senior Lecturer this year. And the Department bid farewell to Professor Miles tight who retired after eight years with us. There have also been some notable successes in our student body, including Aleksandra Monka a Year 3 student in MEng Civil Engineering has been awarded a prestigious Chamberlain Award as part of the Canadian Globalink Research Internships, and Karlo Olalla being named Sports Personality of the Year at the annual student Societies’ Awards.

All of our successes are the result of the resilience, dedication and sheer bloody-mindedness of our staff and our students, not least our most recent graduates and newest members of the alumni community. And it is my colleagues, our students and you, our alumni, who make the Department such a fantastic place to work and study. Come what may I know that we will continue to flourish. I do hope you enjoy this newsletter and I wish you and your family all the very best for the coming year.

With very best wishes,

Professor Karl Dearn
Head of the Department of Civil Engineering

Read the 2020 Civil Engineering Alumni Newsletter here.