E

New Civil Engineering Professor Wins Award

140808_New_FacultyTuscaloosa, Ala. – Dr. Eric Marks was recently recognized for his work as a graduate research assistant, the position he held before joining faculty The University of Alabama in fall 2014.

The Construction Industry Institute named Marks the first recipient of its Outstanding Graduate Research Assistant Award, which goes to a deserving graduate researcher.

Marks graduated with his Ph.D. in civil engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2014 before becoming a professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering in the UA College of Engineering. Marks studies innovation and automation in construction safety including hazard mitigation strategies and real-time data collection.

Marks earned the honor for his dedication to see a project sponsored by CII through after the loss of the principal investigator on the project coupled with his doctoral advisor at Georgia Tech leaving the project as well. Marks was left to oversee the project taking on the essential academic duties for the team, producing research deliverables, creating presentation templates and demonstrating deliverables for review.

“Eric’s research experience in construction safety proved to be critical to the research,” read a report from the CII announcing the award. “His team members report that, without his passion for the research and his tireless work to bring it to a successful conclusion, the team’s report-out would have been diminished, if at all possible.”

The research was reported at the CII’s annual conference in July. The research team created a near miss reporting program for implementation by construction companies. The study identified best practices associated with near miss reporting on construction sites. The research project and results were reported in a recent publication of the Engineering News-Record, a trade publication.

In 1837, The University of Alabama became one of the first five universities in the nation to offer engineering classes. Today, UA’s College of Engineering has more than 5,800 students and more than 130 faculty. In recent years, students in the College have been named USA Today All-USA College Academic Team members, Goldwater, Hollings, Portz, Boren, Mitchell and Truman scholars.