Kent State Construction Management Program Founder Receives Outstanding Teaching Award

Known within the College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology for building the Construction Management program from the ground up, Kent State University Associate Lecturer Joseph Karpinski also has received the 2016 University Teaching Council’s Outstanding Teaching Award.

The Outstanding Teaching Award is presented to full-time, non-tenure-track or part-time faculty members who consistently show outstanding teaching skills in the classroom. Sponsored by the University Teaching Council, the awards are given annually to three faculty members for their outstanding achievements in teaching. This year’s recipients and finalists were formally honored on Oct. 21 at the University Teaching Council’s Celebrating College Teaching conference President’s Luncheon, held in the Kent Student Center Ballroom.

“When the large group of people entered the classroom with a photographer snapping away, I was totally surprised,” the elated professor says. “It took a minute to realize what was going on.”

Karpinski lives and breathes construction management.

“He started this field of study at Kent State and developed it into the major that it is today,” says student nominator Charles Lonergan. “Joe has been in the construction industry, and he is incredibly passionate about building.”

Karpinski claims that one of his biggest accomplishments was founding the Construction Management program in 2007. The program began with approximately 15 students and is now approaching 200 students today. Karpinski was the only full-time faculty member for the first four-and-a-half years and taught 11 different courses.

Students praise Karpinski for being not only an outstanding educator, but also an encouraging mentor.

“This is where Joe exceeds any expectation that I could imagine,” Lonergan explains. “He has created an atmosphere in the program that is more like a family than a field of study. He truly wants the best for every one of his students. He has devoted his life to teaching at multiple levels and has touched so many lives.”

The family bond within the Construction Management program is especially poignant for Karpinski, whose daughter graduated from the program in 2013.

“One of my proudest teaching moments was participating in the May 2013 graduation ceremony following my daughter,” Karpinski says. “She was carrying the College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology gonfalon and was graduating with her degree in construction management.”

Karpinski’s daughter is currently working for the Office of the University Architect and is helping to coordinate the Summit Street Improvement Project.

For more information about the College of Applied Engineering, Sustainability and Technology and the Construction Management program, visit

POSTED: Wednesday, November 23, 2016 12:03 PM
Andrew Piggott