Liu Receives PhD

Congratulations to Gaoyu Liu for being hooded and receiving his doctoral degree this past weekend!

Larry Fahnestock, Gaoyu Liu and Jim LaFave at CEE Graduation Reception.

Liu Defends and Deposits Dissertation

Congratulations to Gaoyu Liu for defending and depositing his Ph.D. dissertation! Gaoyu’s doctoral research, “Structural Behavior of Integral Abutment Bridge Approach Slabs,” was co-advised by Jim LaFave and Larry Fahnestock as part of a project funded by the Illinois Tollway. Best wishes to Gaoyu in his post-Illinois pursuits, which already have begun as a Software Development Engineer at Amazon in Seattle!

Steel Building Site Visit

Prof. Fahnestock and students in CEE462, Steel Structures II, toured the under-construction University of Illinois Foundation Philanthropy Center and learned about the fast-track design/build delivery that will bring this 60,000 sq. ft. facility online by the end of 2023. Thanks to the project team members from Perkins Eastman and Berglund Construction who made this visit possible!

Steel Structures II class at the new UI Foundation building.
Steel Structures II class in the new UI Foundation building, State Farm Center beyond.

Alumni Spotlight – Riddle at ESi

Joe Riddle (MS, 2014) joined ESi in 2014 and has been a Senior Consultant since 2018.  His work includes investigation, evaluation, and repair of distressed structures across a wide range of building types – residential, commercial, and industrial.  During his graduate studies at Illinois, Joe was involved in field monitoring of two integral abutment bridges on the Illinois Tollway, and the results from that project provided the foundation for the current project funded by the Illinois Center for Transportation (ICT): Evaluation of Spatial and Temporal Load Distribution in Steel Bridge Superstructures
(ICT R27-194).

AISC Internships – Summer 2023

An AISC internship offers a behind-the-scenes look at the present and future state of structural steel design. AISC is now accepting applications from students enrolled in structural, architectural, or civil engineering programs for a full-time paid summer internship at AISC’s headquarters in downtown Chicago for 2023. AISC interns support both the AISC Engineering and Research Department and the Education Department in developing technical resources for structural steel design and education.

Qualified applicants:

  • Will be enrolled in at least the third year of their curriculum.
  • Will have completed at least one course in structural steel design.
  • Plan to continue with their education full-time in fall 2023.

Interested students should submit their resumes, including their cumulative GPA and a list of related coursework, by February 24, 2023, to with “AISC Summer Internship” in the subject line. Any related inquiries can be sent to the same address.

Shi on Winning Hackathon Team

Congratulations to Shitao Shi and his teammates for winning the 2022 NHERI Hackathon in July 2022! The teams were judged on innovation, creativity, presentation and use of DesignSafe and SimCenter tools. Shitao is a Ph.D. student studying seismic stability design of steel frames as part of a project sponsored by the American Institute of Steel Construction.

New ASCE Journal Papers Published

Congratulations to Aradhana Agarwal and Sunny Zhou for recently publishing ASCE journal papers on their Ph.D. research! Aradhana is studying seismic stability of multi-tiered braced frames (supported by AISC) and Sunny is studying service performance of composite steel I-girder bridges (supported by ICT).

Agarwal, A. and Fahnestock, L.A. “Comparative Seismic Response Evaluation of Steel Multi-Story and Multi-Tiered Ordinary Concentrically Braced Frames,” Journal of Structural Engineering, ASCE.

Zhou, S., Fahnestock, L.A. and LaFave, J.M. “Development of Skewed Steel I-Girder Bridge Field Monitoring Strategy through Agency Survey and Numerical Simulation,” Practice Periodical on Structural Design and Construction, ASCE.