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College of Engineering & Science - Louisiana Tech University


Tech Engineer Magazine

The Louisiana Tech Engineer magazine was first published in September of 1939.On the front cover of this premier issue was a photograph of then Tech President E. S. Richardson. Below his photograph was a message from him encouraging the endeavors of the publishing staff of Tech Engineer and the endeavors of all of Tech's engineering students. His message is quoted as follows: "Within the next year and a half, Louisiana Tech will have a building devoted to Engineering that will have no equal in this part of the country. It is the policy of the Administration to foster in every way possible a course for Engineers that will meet present day demands. I wish to congratulate the Editorial Staff in their new undertaking in the publication of "The Tech Engineer." My good will and support is tendered."

From that first issue through its last issue in 1991, Tech Engineer has featured a mixture of engineering and technical articles, news of the Tech Engineering program, and various items dealing with the personal side of engineering students. The first editor of the magazine was J. W. Rabb. The first big story featured in the magazine was the building of Bogard Hall. Another big story featured in the magazine was the first offering of the bachelor's degree in chemical engineering, which came in 1940.

The evolution of Tech Engineer resembled a rolling hill, so to speak. The first few issues in the late 30's and early 40's were very simple. They were little more than ten pages in length and featured only black and white printing. Nevertheless, they featured all the important news of the time in the Tech engineering program. The 1950's sawTech Engineer begin to become a more sophisticated publication. It began to feature full-page ads of sponsors. Many of these sponsors were large national companies. A memorable example of such an ad was featured in the November/December 1955 issue of Tech Engineer. This issue featured a 2-page ad featuring the new hand-held scientific calculator by Texas Instruments, which sold for over $300 at the time. The calculator had little more than basic arithmetic operations and the three major trigonometric functions. It was designed to retain memory on some sort of magnetic film inside the calculator.

The peak of the aforementioned "rolling hill" for Tech Engineer came in the mid-1960's. This era featured Tech Engineer at its finest. It contained attractive color photos and ads. It marked the beginning of a new feature ofTech Engineer: the Dean's Corner. This new feature was a one-page message from the Dean of Engineering. It usually contained pertinent new information about the College of Engineering and Science. And the average length of Tech Engineer during the 1960's was at least forty or fifty pages.

The 1970's featured the same quality of the 1960's except that for the most part, it did not contain any color photos besides the cover. The 1980's featured a decline in budget and thus quality of Tech Engineer until its last issue in 1991. Louisiana Tech Engineer magazine is an historical part of engineering at Louisiana Tech. It is the definitive chronicle of the College of Engineering and Science at Louisiana Tech University.