Pitt | Swanson Engineering
Welcome from the Chair

Radisav Vidic Web

Dear Visitor,

Thank you for your interest in our Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering. I’m excited to share our latest news and updates with you. Enrollment at the Swanson School continues to grow, with 633 first-year students arriving at Benedum Hall. Academically this is another strong class, with an average SAT of 1397 and GPA of 4.2. Our Department welcomed 77 MS students and 44 PhD students this fall, another strong cohort.

These students will have the opportunity to work with our outstanding faculty on research, some of it groundbreaking. In particular I’m proud to share some of the latest news from one of our junior faculty, Dr. Kyle Bibby. Kyle’s interests center around understanding the presence, ecology, and diversity of microorganisms in an environmental engineering context. Since his arrival at Pitt he has worked with Dr. Leonard Casson and colleagues at other institutions, including Drexel and the NIH, to further understand the persistence of Ebola in the environment. His research has been gaining national and international attention, and has been featured as the cover article in Environmental Science & Technology Letters. Additionally, Kyle’s research has also had an impact in the region with his Pittsburgh Water Microbiome project. With the help of Pittsburgh Public Schools and the Carnegie Science Center, he and his students are mapping the types of microbes found in Pittsburgh’s drinking water distribution system and its many streams and rivers.

This past year we also welcomed three new faculty members: Carla Ng, formerly senior scientist at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) Zurich in Switzerland; Leanne Gilbertson, who joins us from Yale University; and John Sebastian as McKamish Construction Management Director, who brings decades of industry experience from Dick Corporation and dck worldwide to help further develop one of our most popular programs. 

Among the student and faculty accomplishments, you’ll find about our ASCE student chapter, which captured second place at OVSC, their highest ranking ever. And on the academic side, you’ll find all the Awards our faculty received in the last five years here.

The success of our students and faculty also is incumbent upon the support we receive from our many alumni and friends, such as Dr. Charles Sorber, a noted researcher, former Dean of the Swanson School, and accomplished academic and president within The University of Texas system. After his passing in 2013, his wife Linda worked with us to establish the Charles A. and Linda E. Sorber Fellows Fund to support undergraduates in sustainable engineering. We are very thankful to Linda for establishing this fund and helping to maintain Chuck’s legacy at Pitt.

I do hope you enjoy browsing through our site where you can find most of the information you may need in terms of undergraduate and graduate admission, or the research interests of our faculty.  As always, please feel free to contact us if we can be of additional assistance. 


Radisav Vidic, PhD, P.E., BCEE  

William Kepler Whiteford Professor and Department Chair