CCNY Engineering Professor Charles Watkins Named 2005 AAAS Fellow

NEW YORK, November 3, 2005 – Dr. Charles B. Watkins, Professor of Mechanical Engineering and former Dean of Engineering at The City College of New York (CCNY), has been elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Professor Watkins was selected by his peers for his “distinguished leadership in science and engineering education and research, fostering technological innovation, and increasing participation of underrepresented groups in science and engineering careers.” He is one 376 Fellows elected for 2005.

Currently, Professor Watkins is Director of The City College’s Center for Mesoscopic Modeling and Simulation, a National Science Foundation Center for Research Excellence in Science and Technology. He joined CCNY as Dean of Engineering in 1986 and served in that role until 2000. Previously, he was Chairman of the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Howard University, where he established the first engineering Ph.D. program at a historically black institution.

In addition, he co-authored a recent landmark study examining issues related to African-American student success in engineering with Dr. Ramona Brown, Assistant Dean of Student Programs. For their work in establishing the Program for the Retention of Engineering Students (PRES) at The City College of New York, the White House presented the Presidential Award for Science and Engineering Mentoring to Professor Watkins and Dean Brown in 1997.

Professor Watkins has held research posts with Sandia National Laboratories, the Department of Energy, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the U.S. Navy. He has consulted to numerous government agencies and businesses, as well.

In 1984, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers selected him for a one-year appointment to the National Governor’s Association, where he was a Senior Fellow in the Center for Policy Analysis assigned to the Governors’ Task Force on Technological Innovation. He served on the Board of Directors of Parsons Brinkerhoff, Inc., an international engineering firm, from 1994-98.

Professor Watkins received his B.S.M.E. from Howard University and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of New Mexico. He is a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and Associate Fellow of the American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics.

About The City College of New York

For over 158 years, The City College of New York has provided low-cost high-quality education for New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. Over 12,200 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in the College of Liberal Arts and Science, the School of Architecture, the School of Education, the School of Engineering, the Center for Worker Education and the Sophie Davis School of Biomedical Education.

About the American Association for the Advancement of Science

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) is the world’s largest general scientific society, and publisher of the journal, Science ( AAAS was founded in 1848, and includes some 262 affiliated societies and academies of science, serving 10 million individuals. Science has the largest paid circulation of any peer-reviewed general science journal in the world, with an estimated readership of one million. The non-profit AAAS ( is open to all and fulfills its mission to “advance science and serve society” through initiatives in science policy, international programs, science education and more.

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