July 16, 2013

Contact: Al Estes
805-756-1314; acestes@calpoly.edu

Cal Poly Architectural Engineering Professor Recognized Nationally for Teaching Excellence

SAN LUIS OBISPO -- John Lawson, Cal Poly assistant professor of architectural engineering, recently earned national recognition from the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) for his effective and engaging teaching style.

He received the ASCE’s ExCEEd (Excellence in Civil Engineering Education) New Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award in June during the American Society for Engineering Education’s annual conference in Atlanta. The award recognizes outstanding engineering faculty who have five years or less full-time teaching experience.

Last summer, Lawson was invited to serve as an assistant mentor to faculty members from around the nation at ASCE’s Excellence in Civil Engineering Education workshop, held annually at West Point.

Architectural Engineering Department Head Al Estes said students appreciate Lawson’s engaging teaching style, dedication to their education, and genuine interest in them as individuals.

“John began teaching at Cal Poly in 2009 after 25 years in professional practice and has quickly established himself as a master teacher, a leader, a mentor, and an advocate for the students,” Estes said. “He has excelled in the classroom, interacted with students outside of the classroom, engaged in engineering education research, served with professional societies, and succeeded in every aspect of being a faculty member,” Estes said.

Lawson’s educational involvement with his students is not limited to the classroom. He routinely organizes field trips to local building sites. He also serves as the faculty advisor for the student chapters of the Structural Engineers Association of California (SEAOC) and Architectural Engineering Institute (AEI) and accompanies the students visiting professional firms and touring high-profile constructions sites in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Seattle and New York City. Each year, Lawson accompanies students to the SEAOC Annual Convention and ASCE student leadership workshops.

Lawson is a 1983 Cal Poly architectural engineering graduate and an alumnus of Stanford University. Last year, he won the California Faculty Association’s Distinguished Educator Award, which honors and recognizes the best non-tenured teachers at Cal Poly.

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