Timeline of welding engineering at Ohio State

Ohio State Welding Engineering timeline graphic

The evolution of the welding engineering program at The Ohio State University represents the development, function and influence of materials as the domestic and global landscapes transformed into an industrial-charged framework. The welding engineering program remains the only ABET-approved engineering program offering a B.S. in the United States, and it's the only academic institution to offer graduate degrees in welding engineering. Its faculty, technology and industry partnerships continue to transform education, advance research and promote collaboration.


  • The Department of Industrial Engineering elevated welding engineering's effectiveness through a series of annual conferences, which led to the advent of a welding engineering program at Ohio State.


  • Charles McQuigg, the Dean of the College of Engineering, recognized that welding education should be included at an engineering level.


  • Ohio State established a combined welding engineering-industrial engineering Bachelor of Science degree within the Department of Industrial Engineering.


  • Jim Lincoln, president of Lincoln Electric, was a member of the Board of Trustees at Ohio State University and was a large reason the university established a welding engineering program.5


  • Spanning the late 1940s and early 1950s, welding expertise was in demand based on circumstances during World War II. Manufacturing processes used to create naval ships, military vehicles and equipment benefited from welding's efficiency. Welding research became a national priority to improve its application, resulting in academic entities and institutes transforming welding from a manufacturing process to an engineering discipline.2
  • The viability of the welding engineering program was established, and the Board of Trustees approved the Bachelor and Master of Science degrees in welding engineering


  • The Ohio State University and the College of Engineering recognized that engineering for welding required a unique set of knowledge and technical expertise from diverse engineering backgrounds - materials, manufacturing, design, and non-destructive evaluation. The Department of Welding Engineering was created. Professor Robert S. Green was the first department chair.
Welding Engineering at Ohio State University 1956


  • Professor Roy B. McCauley became department chair. He led the department until 1979 and grew the curriculum and program to meet the needs of the welding field.


  • Robert McMaster joins the Department of Welding Engineering. He is known for his expertise in nondestructive testing.


  • The Master of Science in Welding Engineering was authorized. The welding program had three faculty members for the next two decades.


  • Clarence Jackson and Edward Funk joined the department. Both are recognized for their expertise in welding consumables and metallurgy.


  • Karl Graff became department chair until 1987. 
  • NSF named the department an Industry/University Cooperative Research Center.
  • Faculty numbers increased to 10.
1978 metal pouring welding engineering Ohio State University


  • National Science Foundation and industry-sponsored Center for Welding Research is created.


  • WE faculty grew to meet student demand. Professors Albright, Richardson and Tsai were hired. Professor Laslo was appointed to continue nondestructive evaluation begun by Bob McMaster.
  • Robotics and polymers were added to the curriculum.
  • Undergraduate enrollment expanded to over 50 graduates per class and 75 graduates per graduate-level class.


  • Professor William Baeslack joined the department and initiated teaching and research focused on joining of non-ferrous and advanced materials.


  • Governor Celeste (Ohio) established the Thomas Edison Program and Edison technology centers as part of an economic development strategy4
1980 Ohio State welding engineering


  • Doctoral program instituted and drove the department to revise all aspects of its education and research programs.4
  • The Ohio State University joins forces with the State of Ohio's Edison Program, Battelle Memorial Institute and The Welding Institute of the U.K. to create Edison Welding Institute.
  • Professor David Dickinson joins department.


  • Professor Stanislav Rokhlin brings his expertise on non-destructive evaluation to the department.


  • Non-destructive evaluation curriculum added to program


  • First student graduates with Ph.D. in welding engineering


  • The Department of Welding Engineering and the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering were merged to become the Department of Industrial, Welding and Systems Engineering. Shortly after, welding engineering operations relocated to Edison Joining Technical Center (EJTC) to become one of the world's largest welding engineering centers in the world.
Ohio State welding engineering circa 2015
circa 2015


  • Welding engineering courses began offering online courses.


  • Fully online M.S. in Welding Engineering was approved.
  • Over 50 students enrolled in online WE classes
  • Initiatives began to expand student base outside of U.S. and Canada


  • The welding engineering program was transitioned to the Department of Materials Science and Engineering based on growing synergy between welding engineering and materials science and engineering.
  • The Manufacturing and Materials Joining Innovation Center (Ma2JIC) was approved by the National Science Foundation as an Industry and University Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC). Its headquarters is at Ohio State University.


  • Bachelor of Science in Welding Engineering becomes ABET accredited.


  • Boyd Panton joins faculty as the Lincoln Electric Endowed Professor.
  • GE donates 3D metal printer to welding engineering.


  • Wei Zhang becomes associate chair of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering.
Ohio State welding engineering 2022


  • Vapor Foil Actuator Welding (VFAW), an impulse welding system developed at Ohio State, becomes commercially available.


  • Ma2JIC awarded NSF START grant to train welding interns from other institutions.


Edison Welding Institute. A Unique Past. A Dynamic Present. An Exciting Future. Circa 1990.
Lippold, John. Welding Engineering Education at The Ohio State University. 2005.
3 Lippold, John. Welding Engineering Education at The Ohio State University. Journal of Japanese Welding Society. 2006.
4 Graff, Karl. How we did it - some thoughts on starting and growing Edison Welding Institute. 1998, 2005, 2021.

6 Graff, Karl. Lincoln Electric and EWI. 2005.




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