Background Image

News & Events


Clarkson University's Gravander Named Distinguished Service Professor

Associate Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences Jerry Gravander has been named Distinguished Service Professor by full vote of the Clarkson University board of trustees.

Jerry Gravander (left) stands with Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences Peter Turner.The board resolution recognizes Gravander for his contributions to higher education.

Gravander came to Clarkson more than 40 years ago as an assistant professor of philosophy in what is now the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences.

During his career he has participated in interdisciplinary research projects on nuclear power, the civil aviation system, potential applications for advanced machine intelligence in space exploration, and solid waste recycling.

Gravander's teaching has ranged from standard philosophy topics to the social, political, and value issues arising from the interaction of science and technology with society. He has published and presented widely on engineering ethics, business ethics, and the impacts of science and technology on society, as well as on liberal education for engineering students.

From the outset at Clarkson, he took very seriously his mission of teaching the liberal arts to a largely STEM-oriented student population. His educational goals were both the core mission of the liberal arts education of (mostly) engineering majors, and, most importantly, helping them and their faculty realize the full importance their experience.

Gravander has held several administrative positions at Clarkson, including chair of the Department of Humanities & Social Sciences, and dean of the School of Liberal Arts. As special assistant to the president for strategic planning in the early 1990s, he was one of the principal architects for both Clarkson's mission statement and the "Vision of a Clarkson Education."

He serves as chair of the Administrative Council, chair of the Clarkson Common Experience Committee, chair of the Clarkson Integrated Outcomes Assessment Committee and as Clarkson’s Accreditation Liaison Officer to the Middle States Commission on Higher Education he has led several Middle States accreditation reviews.

Gravander has been an elected member of the Faculty Senate, and over the years he has been chair of 19 University committees, as well as several school and departmental committees. He has received Clarkson’s Commendable Service Award and Commendable Leadership Award, and he was inducted into Phalanx, Clarkson’s highest honorary society, in 2009.

He has served the American Society of Engineering Education (ASEE) in several capacities, including program chair and division chair of the Liberal Education and Engineering Studies Division and editor of the division’s publication Liberal Studies Educator. He also has been program chair and secretary of ASEE’s St. Lawrence Section.

Gravander was recognized by ASEE with the Olmsted Award for “innovative contributions to the liberal arts within engineering education," an ASEE Centennial Certificate for “exceptional contribution to the American Society for Engineering Education,” and a Commendation Award for his service to the St. Lawrence Section. Gravander also has been active in the Humanities & Technology Association, serving in several leadership roles, including two terms as president.

He holds a bachelor of science degree in chemistry from the Illinois Institute of Technology, a bachelor of arts in philosophy from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville, and a Ph.D. in philosophy with a concentration in the history and philosophy of science from the University of Texas at Austin.

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: Associate Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences Jerry Gravander has been named Distinguished Service Professor by full vote of the Clarkson University board of trustees. Above, Gravander (left) stands with Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences Peter Turner.

[A photograph for media use is available at]

[News directors and editors: For more information, contact Kelly Chezum, VP for External Relations, at 315-268-4483 or]

Calendar View the full calendar >>

Full Calendar RSS Feed