Dr. Vascar Harris

TU Board Representative

Vascar Godfrey Harris was born in Lynchburg Virginia on December 25th 1940 to Vascar Ellen Barnette Harris, mother, and Sydney Woodruff Harris, father. Even as a youngster airplanes were among the first recognized objects of attention.

Elementary and High School education was done at Payne Elementary School and Dunbar High School in Lynchburg. He was elected President of the senior class, graduating in 1958. Motivated by the launch of Sputnik, he elected to major in Engineering and was accepted for admission to Johns Hopkins University. There he obtained Bachelors and Masters degrees in Mechanical Engineering and Mechanics. The Doctorate was earned in 1974 from Johns Hopkins in the area of experimental fluid turbulence.

Upon graduation in 1974, Howard University recruited him as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. There he progressed to Associate Professor and Associate Dean of the College of Engineering. In 1982 he became Dean of the School of Engineering and Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Tuskegee Institute in Tuskegee Alabama. Over the next several years as Dean of Engineering he developed programs in Aerospace Science Engineering, Chemical Engineering and the 3M Eminent Scholars Endowed Chair in Materials.

Corporate and government work experience included: General Electric Company, Microwave and Mobile Radio Communications Divisions, Lynchburg, VA; the Rand Corporation, Santa Monica, CA; the U.S. Department of Commerce, Maritime Administration, Washington DC; Dudley Gill and Associates Fiberglass Boat Division, Clanton, MD; Slipstream, Fiberglass Aircraft Division, Tuskegee, AL; and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Langley Research Center, Langley, VA. He also served in the NAVY and attained the rank of Captain, U. S. Navy Reserve.

Other accomplishments while serving as Professor of Mechanical and Aerospace Science Engineering at Tuskegee University include Department Headship of the Department of Aerospace Science Engineering and Chairperson of the Tuskegee University Faculty Senate. Academic appointments also include that of Adjunct Professor at Kansas State University, where he taught and coordinated flight training in a dual degree program and the University of Fort Hare in the Republic of South Africa serving as thesis advisor to students in Physics. Several capacity building projects were also initiated with the U. S. Department of Energy in South Africa soon after the end of apartythe. These projects addressed the severe needs of the majority population in South Africa.

Other activities of significance included: Serving on the City of Tuskegee Airport Advisory Committee. Served as President of the Chief Anderson chapter of NAI in 1992-93. Serving as consultant for the B. T. Washington “Preparation for Tomorrow” program, an aerospace engineering curriculum development program for High School implementation throughout Alabama. Six pilot sites in Alabama, including B. T, Washington High have been identified. Served as expeditor for establishing the Naval ROTC program at Tuskegee University.

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