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About John M. Sullivan Jr.

Teaching is the most important aspect of my profession. I have strived to teach the full spectrum of college offerings addressing freshman students through Ph.D. students. The project philosophy is a fundamental pillar of the WPI education. I encourage and promote this ideal in all of the projects that I advise. Students who bring a project to fruition gain more knowledge and understanding than most conventional instructional modes. I am committed to MQP and IQP activities. Students completing their projects under my advise have received more than two dozen awards and honors in the forms of undergraduate publications, Provost awards, national competition awards, and ME design of year awards. Some of these projects were associated with the FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) robotic competitions. Under my guidance the WPI team has received numerous awards including the Proctor and Gamble Design of Year Award and the National Number One Seed Award. One of the most significant contributions that I have given to WPI is engineering diversity. I received a BS degree specializing in zoology. A second BS in ME was followed with a Masters in Materials - brittle materials, glass and ceramics. I worked for several years at Owens-Corning research institute in the area of heat transfer and thermal performance of insulation. Afterwards, I completed a doctorate in numerical methods with applications in phase change phenomena. While maintaining diversity I have demonstrated expertise in the development and application of advanced numerical methods for partial differential equations in engineering sciences, and in interactive computer graphics and automatic mesh generation. I have had continuous external sponsored research for my entire time at WPI (25 years 1987-2012, $6.5 million). Simultaneously, I maintain a full teaching and project advising load.


Present Secretary of the Faculty, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Present Associate Department Head, Worcester Polytechnic Institute
Present Professor, Mechanical Engineering, Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Contact Information

Office: Higgins Laboratories, 109
Phone: 508-831-5199
Fax: 508-831-5680