Michigan Tech News

Michigan Tech Professor Named Distinguished Educator by Concrete Institute

Phone: 906-487-2354

By Marcia Goodrich


Last Modified 4:05 PM, September 15, 2010

Tess Ahlborn

September 15, 2010—

Tess Ahlborn has received the 2010 Distinguished Educator Award from the Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute (PCI).

The award recognizes educators who have made significant contributions to the educational mission of the precast concrete structures industry.

Ahlborn, an associate professor of civil and environmental engineering, teaches concrete design classes at both the undergraduate and graduate level and has contributed substantially to improvements to the course work in her 15 years at Michigan Technological University. She organizes annual plant trips with her students to visit precast concrete facilities and promotes student membership in the PCI. In addition, she has advised more than 25 master’s and PhD graduates who completed projects related to precast/prestressed concrete.

As director of the Center for Structural Durability with the Michigan Tech Transportation Institute, Ahlborn researches structural concrete materials and applications related to prestressed concrete bridges. She revitalized the prestressed concrete research program with the Michigan Department of Transportation and worked extensively with MDOT to improve the durablility of highway structures.

Ahlborn leads a team of two dozen Michigan Tech researchers working to identify the best remote-sensing technologies for monitoring the health of bridges. The $2.8 million project is supported by the US Department of Transportation, MDOT, the Center for Automotive Research, and Michigan Tech.

A member of the PCI Research & Development Council for nearly a decade, Ahlborn has been active as a PCI Convention session moderator and reviewer for conference proceedings. She initiated the Women in PCI event, an annual affair since 2005. More than 70 professional women have used this networking opportunity to establish relationships that benefit the precast concrete structures industry.

Michigan Technological University (www.mtu.edu) is a leading public research university developing new technologies and preparing students to create the future for a prosperous and sustainable world. Michigan Tech offers more than 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs in engineering; forest resources; computing; technology; business; economics; natural, physical and environmental sciences; arts; humanities; and social sciences.