Longtime Mechanical Engineering Professor Larry Witte Retires


Esmeralda Fisher

Friends and colleagues gathered to honor Professor Larry Witte at a reception this month, celebrating his exemplary career of 45 years at the University of Houston.

Witte joined the Department of Mechanical Engineering in 1967 as an assistant professor, became an associate professor in 1969, and professor in 1973. He was the founder of the UH Institute for Space Systems Operations, and twice served as department chair, from 1972 to 1976 and from 1988 to 1993. Witte also served as the associate dean for undergraduate programs from 1998 to 2004, and associate dean for graduate programs from 2004 to 2008.

In addition to teaching undergraduate, graduate, and continuing education courses, Witte has supervised the research of nearly 50 graduate students. He holds a prolific record of research in thermal sciences, having published and presented widely on forced and natural convection, boiling heat transfer, and sliding bubble heat transfer.

Witte has received numerous teaching and achievement awards, including the Cullen College of Engineering Career Teaching Award (2009), the UH Engineering Alumni Organization Roger Eichhorn Service Award (2006), the Cullen College Fluor Daniel Award (2000), the Abraham E. Dukler Distinguished Engineering Faculty Award from the Engineering Alumni Association (1993), the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) South Texas Section Dean W. R. Woolrich Engineer of the Year Award (1992), and was twice selected as Outstanding Mechanical Engineering Professor by the ASME Student Section. Witte was conferred as an ASME Fellow in 1984, and received the ASME South Texas Section Herbert Allen Award, for outstanding technical achievement in high flux heat transfer in 1975.

Among Witte’s many service activities at the college and university level is his longtime dedication to the UH Engineering Golf Tournament committee as chair.

Witte received his B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Arlington State College in 1963, and received M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Mechanical Engineering from Oklahoma State University in 1965 and 1967, respectively.


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