International Accreditation Board Names Patsy Brackin as ABET Fellow

Wednesday, September 23, 2020
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Engineering Design program director Patsy Brackin is a highly decorated professor and respected higher education colleague, because of her leadership roles on campus and in the ABET international accreditation review organization.

Director of Engineering Design and Mechanical Engineering Professor Patsy Brackin has been named a distinguished Fellow by the ABET international educational accreditation agency in recognition of her career achievements in undergraduate engineering education. She will be among four higher education leaders honored at the virtual 2020 ABET Awards Celebration on October 31.

ABET notes that Brackin has led the development and approval of Engineering Accreditation Commission (EAC) criteria changes, trained organization volunteers through facilitated workshops, and worked with global faculty colleagues on several commission committees. She is the chair-elect of the EAC executive committee and has been an ABET program evaluator, while also making numerous presentations and workshops for the organization and its members.

In 2016, Brackin was named an American Society of Mechanical Engineers Fellow, one of the mechanical engineering profession’s highest honors. She also is a licensed professional engineer.

“Dr. Brackin is a talented engineer, educator, and leader who is dedicated to student success. I’m excited to see her talents recognized by ABET, an organization that she has served for many years,” said Rick Stamper, provost and vice president for academic affairs.

Brackin, a member of the Rose-Hulman faculty since 1995, started the engineering design program in 2018. She primarily teaches undergraduate courses in design and creativity, and formerly led the institute’s summer Operation Catapult program. She has supervised two senior-year capstone design projects that have led to a patent, and others that have commercial applications.

Her passion for working with students was developed while teaching evenings after spending the day as a design engineer for the Chicago Bridge & Iron Company in Memphis. As a new engineer, she was required to learn about all aspects of the company, including learning to machine, weld, draft, work construction, and design. She left Chicago Bridge and Iron to enter full-time teaching and later went back to Georgia Tech to earn a doctorate in design methodology. During academic sabbatical leaves, she has worked as a project engineer at Eli Lilly and Company.

Brackin earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in nuclear engineering from the University of Tennessee—prompted to the field after reading The Manhattan Project—and a doctorate in mechanical engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology.

ABET reviews college and university programs in the disciplines of applied and natural science, computing, engineering, and engineering technology at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s degree levels. Accreditation gives students, employers, and society assurance that a program meets the quality standards that produce graduates prepared to enter a global workforce. The organization has recognized Fellows since 1988. Find out more about this year’s inductees and past recipients at