Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Vanderbilt’s civil and environmental engineers are imagining new solutions to society’s most pressing problems, including climate change and sustainability, by leveraging novel technological innovations sure to change the future of built and environmental infrastructure.

Solving Traffic

Vanderbilt engineering researchers Daniel Work and Jonathan Sprinkle led the world’s largest real-world road test on a stretch of I-24 in Nashville to see how AI-enabled vehicles can ease traffic for more sustainable and less stressful driving.

Department Overview

Our department provides highly individualized opportunities for each graduate and undergraduate student to meet their future career goals, with emphasis on multidisciplinary experiences, innovation and leadership.

Through immersion experiences, a strong engineering foundation and theoretical understanding, and a personalized educational program, our students are well-prepared to innovate engineering solutions and become leaders and entrepreneurs in their profession.


Our strengths in risk, reliability and resilience, cyber-physical systems, nanoscale sciences and engineering, and computational engineering allow us to perform high-impact, multidisciplinary research to answer engineering's most important questions.


Professor speaking to students

Department Faculty

Our faculty are recognized world leaders in civil infrastructure systems engineering; materials, structures and mechanics; water resources, quality and treatment; nuclear environmental engineering; and environmental materials and durability.

Meet the Faculty

Civil & Environmental Engineering Degree Programs

Graduate Programs

Civil and environment engineering graduate students pursuing M.Eng., M.S. and Ph.D. degrees work with our world-renowned faculty on high-impact research projects, while gaining knowledge of infrastructure and environmental engineering with emphasis on the use of reliability and risk management.

Explore Graduate Degree Programs »

Master's of Engineering Program in Construction Management »

Master's of Engineering Program in Risk, Reliability, and Resilience Engineering »

Undergraduate Programs

Our accredited Bachelor of Engineering in Civil Engineering program offers a broad-based education in civil and environmental engineering fundamentals and leadership, management and communications skills. Environmental Engineering is considered a sub-discipline within the Civil Engineering degree program.

See Undergraduate Information »



Seminars and Conferences

  • Seminars

    Spring 2024

    Location (unless noted): FGH 110

    Time: 12:15 pm - 1:15 pm CST (unless noted)

    Fall 2023

  • Conferences

    Did you miss the 15th Annual Project Management Symposium? Here are two videos to check out: Video 1 and Video 2 with Mayor O'Connell.

    18th Annual Healthcare Design & Construction Symposium - August 7-8, 2024

    This event is sold out.

    Select videos from 2023 HCDC Symposium

    Are you on the Construction Management mailing list for workshops and seminars?  If not, click here and send us a note.

  • Past Seminars

    View the full list of past seminars.

    2023-2024 SEMINAR SPEAKERS

    Dr. Jin-Song Pei
    Associate Professory, Civil & Environmental Science, University of Oklahoma
    "Mem-Models: A New Hysteresis Model Class for Path-Dependency, Internal Damage, & Recovery"

    Dr. Will Coombs
    Professor in Computational Mechanics, Department of Engineering, Durham University
    "Simulation of Large Deformation Solid Mechanics via the Material Point Method"

    Dr. Jennifer Guelfo
    Assistant Professor, Edward & Linda Faculty Fellow, Civil, Environmental, & Construction Engineering, Texas Tech University
    "The Dirty Side of Clean Energy: Lithium Ion Batteries as a Source of PFAS in the Environment"

    Dr. Nikola Blagojevic
    Postdoctoral Scholar, Chair of Structural Dynamics & Earthquake Engineering, WTH Zurich, Switzerland
    "A Novel Framework for Regional Post-Disaster Recovery Modeling & Resilience Assessment of the Built Environment"

    Dr. Brian Eick
    Program Manager & Technical Lead for Structural Health Monitoring, Engineer Research & Development Center of the US Army Corps of Engineers
    "Development of Structural Health Monitoring Technologies for Waterborne Transporation Infrastructure"


    2022-2023 SEMINAR SPEAKERS

    Dr. Pavana Prabhakar
    Charle G. Salmon Associate Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Civil & Environmental Engineering, University of Wisconsin-Madison
    "Advanced Manufacturing & Mechanics of Architected Polymer Composites"

    Ms. Diana Alarcon & Mr. Brad Freeze
    Director / Chief Engineering, Department of Transportation & Multi-Modal Infrastructure, City of Nashville
    "The Nashville Department of Transportation & Multimodal Infrastructure; Not Just A Name Change"

    Dr. Wil Burns
    Visiting Professor, Environmental Policy & Climate Program, Northwestern University
    "Ocean-Based Carbon Dioxide Removal Approaches: Promise & Challenges"

    Emerging Scholars Series: Dr. Somdatta Goswami
    Assitant Professor (Research), Applied Mathematics, Brown University
    "Scientific Machine Learning: Research at the Intersection of Mathematics, Computing, and Data"

    Dr. Nichole Jackson
    Senior Member of Technical Staff, Sandia National Laboratories
    "Extreme Weather Drivers During Power Outages & Equity Considerations for Future Grid Expansion Planning in the United States"

    Dr. Lin Meng
    Assistant Professor, Earth & Environmnetal Sciences, Vanderbilt University
    "Green with Phenology - A Warmer & Brighter City Trick Trees into Thinking Spring Arrives Earlier"

    Dr. Srinivasan Gopalakrishnan
    Professor, Aerospace Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, India
    "Deep Learning Approaches for Ultrasonic Guided Wave Based SHM Applications"

    Dr. John Vick
    Director, Office of Primary Prevention, Tennessee Department of Health
    "Building Healthy Communities: Defining Public Health's Role in Shaping the Built Environment"

    Emerging Scholar Series: Dr. Meghana Ranganathan
    NOAA Climate & Global Change Postdoctoral Fellow, Georgia Institute of Technology
    "Ice Sheet Change: A Microstructural Perspective"

    Dr. Vinamra Agrawal
    Assistant Professor, Aerospace Engineering, Auburn University
    "Applications of Graph Neural Networks for Emulating & Acclerating Fracture Mechanics Problems"

    Special Seminar: Dr. Mitchell J. Small
    Professor Emeritus, Civil & Environmental Engineering / Engineering & Public Policy, Carnegie Mellon University
    "Human-Environmental Systems: Subtle Causal Relationships, High Variability, Pervasive Uncertainty, Limited Data, & Imperfect Measurements...Perfect for a New Multidiscipline"

    Special Seminar: Dr. Wayne Truter
    Professor & Research Director of Forage, Pasture & Land Regeneration Sciences, Department of Plant & Soil Sciences,  University of Pretoria
    "Phytomining & Hyperaccumulation of Constituents of Potential Concern & Value that Deem Vegetation Grown on Rehabilitated Soil or Irrigated with Mine Water Unsafe for Use"


    2021-2022 SEMINAR SPEAKERS

    Ms. Brooke Mason
    Ph.D. Candidate, Civil & Environemtnal Engineering, University of Michigan
    "Autonomous Control of Stormwater Quality"

    Dr. Jack (Ke) Ding
    Postdoctoral Research Scientist, Geological & Atmosphereic Sciences, Iowa State University; Investigator (External), Driving Water Justice Lab, Vanderbilt University
    "Wandering in Human-Natural Systems: Seeking Pathways to a Sustainable Future Under Anthropogenic Challenges & Climate Change"

    Special Seminar: Dr. Guney Olgun
    Assistant Professor of Civil, Architectural & Environmental Engineering, Missouri University of Science & Technology
    "Multi-Scale Modeling of Geomaterials"

    Dr. Xing Gie
    Assistant Professor, Carlton S. Wilder Junior Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Georgia Institute of Technology
    "Opening the 'Black Box' of Leeft for Water Disinfection"

    Dr. Carolyn Pearce
    Scientist, Subsurface Systems; Director, Idream Energy Frontier Research Center, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory
    "Surface Characteristics of Ancient Glass Analogues for Long-Term Disposal of Vitrified Radioactive Waste"

    Dr. David Rounce
    Assistant Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Carnegie Mellon University
    "Projected Twenty-First Century Global Glacier Mass Change & its Impact on Society"

    Dr. Lavanya Marla
    Assistant Professor, Industrial & Enterprise Systems Engineering, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
    "The Role of Good Predicitions in Optimizing Airline Disruption Management: How much is 'Good Enough'?"

    Dr. Sarah Ledford
    Assistant Professor, Department of Geosciences, Georgia State University
    "The Impacts of Urban Infrastructure on Hydrology & In-Stream Biogeochemistry"

    Emerging Scholars Series: Dr. Neha Patankar
    Postdoctoral Research Associate, Andlinger Center for Energy & the Environment, Princeton University
    "Evaluating Technology & Resource Tradeoffs in Decarbonizing the American West"

    Mr. David Cummins
    President & Executive Director, Blue Sky Maritime Coalition
    "Decarbonizing the North American Marine Shipping Sector: Challenges & Opportunities Through a Private Sector Approach"

    Dr. Jinyong Liu
    Assistant Professor, Chemical & Environmental Engineering, University of California Riverside
    "Degradation of Per- & Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS): Structure-Reactivity Relationships & Treatment Strategies"

    Dr. Maryam Shakiba
    Assistant Professor, Civil & Environmental Engineering, Virginia Tech
    "Physics-Based Modeling of Heterogeneous & Additively Manufactured Materials: Combining Finite Elements & Data-Driven Approaches"

Career and Funding Resources

  • Career and Internships

    All full-time career opportunities are posted at the Vanderbilt University Career Center. In addition, all civil engineering faculty are a valuable resource for career opportunities. Professor Lori Troxel is the department's career advisor. Please contact her for further assistance with career advice.

  • Educational Funding Opportunities


    Apply here.

    Deadline: Applications accepted on an as needed basis.

    Faculty and students can apply for funding related to Immersion, Research, or Professional Development. Awards will be based on Societal Significance, Relevance to Civil Engineering, Feasibility of Proposal, and Contribution to Student Development. Each student is limited to one (1) award each year with a maximum of $1,000 for travel for individual and $1,500 for travel for the whole class.

    Examples include, but are not limited to: 

    Immersion: Site visits to engineering projects, site visits with a class, supplies for course projects, travel for course projects;

    Research: Materials for unfunded research with a faculty member, materials for independent resarch, travel for independent research, travel to present research findings at regional and national conferences;

    Professional Development: Recruiting speakers to campus, attend a national convention directly related to civil engineering.


    Apply here.

    Graduate student topping-up award for new students: Deadline - TBD

    The Finfrock company has gifted the Civil Engineering department funds to encourage structural engineering learning and hands-on projects. Each year, the fund will award one graduate student a topping--up award of $5,000 for research focused on structural engineering and materials science. This can be used as a recruiting award (through the graduate admissions committee) or as an excellence award in structural and materials engineering category for an existing student.

    Finfrock general funds: Deadline - Applications accepted on an as needed basis.

    The Finfrock company has gifted the Civil Engineering department funds to encourage structural engineering learning and hands-on projects. Collaborations with architecture are encouraged. Funds up to $5,000 can be awarded to faculty or students and can cover equipment, travel, workshops, and similar experiences.

    Funding examples include: Equipment in the lab that encourages structural engineering learning; expenses for travel to conferences, workshops, site visits with a structural engineering emphasis; learning materials used in the classroom to demonstrate concepts related to structural engineering; incentives for faculty to redesign courses with more hands-on activities, etc.


    Sterling Ranch Summer Week-Long Experience: Deadline - January 31, 2024

    You will have the opportunity to travel with faculty to the Sterling Ranch development where you will learn about water rights in Colorado, renewable energy, site development, political hurdles, transportation, home building, xeriscaping, and more. You will visit many sites in the area related to the building of a community. All expenses are paid including travel, hotel, and food. Please complete and submit the Site Visit Application form by January 31, 2024 to be considered. 

    Sterling Ranch Summer Internship: Deadine - January 15, 2024

    You will work alongside the Sterling Ranch development team for 10 weeks in the summer. A variety of learning opportunities are available related to transportation, water, geotechnical, and more. This is a paid summer internship with housing assistance if needed. Please complete and submit the Internship Application form by January 15, 2024 to be considered.


    The School of Engineering is a member to the KEEN Network, The Kern Entrepreneurship Education Network. The mission of KEEN is to graduate engineers with an entrepreneurial mindset (EM) so they can create personal, economic, and societal value through a lifetime of meaningful work.

    As part of the membership, we have 5 fully funded slots to attend virtually/in-person several different workshops. Workshop themese include: teaching and learning; discovery and research; leadership and integration; and student research. Membership also includes 5 slots for the national conference. These 5 seats include travel to/from, hotel stay, and conference registration. 

    For more information or consideration for the workshops or the national conference please contact Julie Vernon.


    VUSE students can apply for funding up to $500 to go towards travel costs to present their research at a conference. Applications must be submitted at least one month prior to the conference. Funds are contingent on availability. Applications must be submitted through this link.

Latest News

Contact Us

Caglar Oskay, Chair

Hiba Baroud, Associate Chair

Lori Troxel, Director of Undergraduate Studies

Dan Work, Director of Graduate Studies (Civil)

Florence Sanchez, Director of Graduate Studies (Environmental)

Shihong Lin, Director of Graduate Recruiting (Environmental)

Sanjiv Gokhale, Director of Graduate Studies for Construction Management

David Kosson, Director of the Environmental Laboratory 

Department Administration Staff

Mailing Address

Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Vanderbilt University
PMB 351831
2301 Vanderbilt Place
Nashville, TN 37235-1831

Delivery Address

Vanderbilt University
Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering
400 24th Avenue South, 267 Jacobs Hall
Nashville, TN 37212

Main Office

Phone: 615-322-2697
Fax: 615-322-3365