Engineer of the Year

MARIETTA, Ga. | Nov 2, 2018

Longtime engineering professor Lance Crimm lands state’s highest honor

Lance Crimm Engineer of the Year
Lance Crimm

Electrical engineering professor Lance Crimm has been named 2019 Engineer of the Year by the Georgia Society of Professional Engineers (GSPE), marking the second time in four years a Kennesaw State University faculty member has received the state’s highest honor.

Crimm, who was originally nominated for the Georgia Engineer of the Year in Education award, received the highest score of all nominations submitted for various categories, earning him the top Georgia Engineer of the Year award. His nominator, retired Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology dean Tom Currin, was 2016 Engineer of the Year.

“I am honored and incredibly humbled to be recognized as Engineer of the Year,” said Crimm, who chairs the Department of Electrical Engineering. “Since arriving on the Marietta Campus, it has been an absolute pleasure to develop the next generation of engineers alongside our talented faculty within the engineering college, and it’s wonderful that the GSPE continues to acknowledge our dedication to the profession.”

Crimm first visited the Marietta Campus while a graduate student at the Georgia Institute of Technology. Needing a textbook for one of his courses, he found the only available copy in the state at the former Southern College of Technology, later known as Southern Polytechnic State University and now Kennesaw State. Struck by the tight-knit nature of the campus and the institution’s commitment to applied learning, Crimm said he decided that would eventually teach there.

In September 1997, Crimm joined the University as an assistant professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Technology Department and was instrumental in introducing new engineering degree programs, leading to his selection as SPSU Teacher of the Year in 2008. He became chair of the Department of Electrical Engineering in July 2015, which has since grown to include a dozen faculty members. Outside of teaching, Crimm has been involved with many of the college’s science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) outreach efforts.

He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering from Georgia Tech, and is licensed as a professional engineer in Georgia. Prior to becoming a professor, Crimm spent three years in industry as a hardware engineer.

“It’s kind of like you’re living history,” he said of his tenure at KSU. “It’s impressive to see how much our engineering programs have grown. The thing that makes me most proud is seeing what our graduates do five to 10 years down the road. I keep track of what they’re doing with their lives – the success they’re having in graduate school and the job promotions they’re receiving – and it’s incredibly fulfilling.”

Renee Butler, interim dean of the Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology, said the growth wouldn’t be possible without Crimm’s leadership.

“It’s hard to overstate how valuable Lance is to our college and to the University as a whole,” Butler said. “He is not only active in teaching and providing leadership, but has been a champion of STEM outreach. He serves as an excellent model for other educators and is a great source of inspiration within the college.”

Crimm will be honored at the Georgia Engineering Awards on Saturday, Feb. 23 in Atlanta.

Last year, KSU civil engineering student Chloe Enix was recognized as the 2018 Student Engineer of the Year by the GSPE. Her advisor, senior lecturer Nancy Turner, was awarded the 2017 Georgia Engineer of the Year in Education. In 2016, KSU completed a trifecta by landing three honorees: Currin, Engineer of the Year; Valerie Washington, Student Engineer of the Year; and Kurt Jacobson, Engineering Technology Student of the Year.

The Southern Polytechnic College of Engineering and Engineering Technology at Kennesaw State University is the second largest engineering college in Georgia, serving more than 4,000 students. The College offers 20 undergraduate and graduate degrees in engineering and engineering technology led by industry-expert faculty in the University’s state-of-the-art facilities.

– Travis Highfield

Photos by David Caselli

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A leader in innovative teaching and learning, Kennesaw State University offers undergraduate, graduate and doctoral degrees to its more than 43,000 students. Kennesaw State is a member of the University System of Georgia with 11 academic colleges. The university’s vibrant campus culture, diverse population, strong global ties and entrepreneurial spirit draw students from throughout the country and the world. Kennesaw State is a Carnegie-designated doctoral research institution (R2), placing it among an elite group of only 7 percent of U.S. colleges and universities with an R1 or R2 status. For more information, visit