L. Sebastian Bryson, Hardin-Drnevich-Huang Professor in the Department of Civil Engineering, has been promoted to Full Professor. The promotion makes Bryson the first Black full professor in the University of Kentucky College of Engineering’s history.
“Achieving the rank of full professor means that I have equal standing with my senior peers. Being promoted to full professor also opens opportunities for advancement to senior leadership positions,” said Bryson. “Becoming the first Black full professor in the College of Engineering signals to junior faculty of color that tenure and promotion are achievable goals. Having the first Black full professor in the 156-year history of the College just now occurring in 2021 also signals that the work needed to achieve greater representation and inclusion of all people groups in the Commonwealth is far from being over.”
“We in the College of Engineering celebrate Dr. Bryson’s promotion to full professor. His accomplishments in the areas of teaching, research and service demonstrate he is a model faculty member who is able to connect with and inspire students as well as junior faculty,” said Rudy Buchheit, Dr. Rebecca Burchett Liebert Dean. “At the same time, that we are in 2021 and only now welcoming our first Black full professor in the college shows we have a lot of work to do to ensure a diverse, equitable and inclusive environment.”
Bryson joined the UK College of Engineering faculty in 2006 after teaching at Ohio University for five years. He worked as a geotechnical engineer for CH2M Hill for six years before earning his Ph.D. from Northwestern University in 2002. Bryson holds a joint appointment in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences and serves as the Department of Civil Engineering’s director of graduate studies.
Earlier this year, Bryson was granted Diplomate, Geotechnical Engineering (D.GE) certification by the Academy of Geo-Professionals. Professional certification offered through the Academy ensures that geotechnical engineers have specialized knowledge and skills in their field of practice.
“What geotechnical engineers do is critical to all aspects of science and engineering,” said Bryson. “I’m honored to have this recognition from my peers.”