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Clarkson University's Thew Named Distinguished Service Professor of Civil Engineering

Spencer Thew, PE/LS, has been named a Distinguished Service Professor of Civil Engineering by full vote of the Clarkson University board of trustees.

Spencer ThewThe resolution recognizes Thew, a Clarkson alumnus, for his work to advance civil engineering through practice in the region and through the education of thousands of civil engineering students.

While attending Clarkson, Thew began his career working for a land surveyor and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers during the summer. He earned a bachelor's degree in civil engineering in 1963 and a master's degree in civil engineering in 1972.

Thew started teaching at Clarkson 1966. Always a strong advocate of higher education, he encouraged and supported the continued education of the professional staff at his own business, Atlantic Testing Laboratories (ATL).

His experience as president of ATL provided students with critical, practical knowledge from his day-to-day work. Thew has been involved in a variety of major projects, such as the Lake Placid Winter Olympics, Fort Drum expansion, Marcy South 765 kV Transmission Line, Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center and Corning World Headquarters building.

In addition to his roles as educator, engineer and businessman, Thew has served as an officer and chairman in several professional societies, including the American Congress of Surveying and Mapping, American Concrete Institute, American Society of Civil Engineers, American Society for Testing and Materials and the National Society of Professional Engineers.

His knowledge of construction materials and geotechnical engineering, in addition to his connections to engineering and construction firms throughout the Northeast, were beneficial to the University when the Construction Engineering Management concentration was created in 1998. He led the Construction Engineering Management program and served as director until November 2015 when Erik Backus, PE, became the director.

The New York State Society of Professional Engineers also has recognized Thew as an Outstanding Professional Engineer in Education. His teaching has had an impact on the education and careers of thousands of civil engineering students, including many who are now leaders in the field.

Clarkson University educates the leaders of the global economy. One in five alumni already leads as an owner, CEO, VP or equivalent senior executive of a company. With its main campus located in Potsdam, N.Y., and additional graduate program and research facilities in the Capital Region and Beacon, New York, Clarkson is a nationally recognized research university with signature areas of academic excellence and research directed toward the world's pressing issues. Through more than 50 rigorous programs of study in engineering, business, arts, education, sciences and the health professions, the entire learning-living community spans boundaries across disciplines, nations and cultures to build powers of observation, challenge the status quo, and connect discovery and innovation with enterprise.

Photo caption: Spencer Thew has been named a Distinguished Service Professor of Civil Engineering by full vote of the Clarkson University board of trustees. Thew, right, stands with Dean of the Wallace H. Coulter School of Engineering William Jemison.

[A photograph for media use is available at .]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Annie Harrison, Director of Media Relations, at 315-268-6764 or]

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