Stanford Electrical Engineering

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Electrical Engineering Timeline

1891 University opens with David S. Jordan as President, who states that "A professor to whom original investigation is unknown should have no place in a university."
1892 A.P. Carman appointed Professor of Electricity in the Physics Department and begins teaching classes in Electrical Engineering.
1893 F.A.C. Perrine is appointed the first Professor of Electrical Engineering. The program of study is centered on the design and construction of central generating plants for electricity.
1894 The first B.A. in Electrical Engineering is awarded.
1898 Perrine departs and EE is administered by either Civil of Mechanical Engineering Professors until 1905. These include Prof. Marx who was instrumental in establishing city owned municipal utilities for Palo Alto.
1905 Harris J. Ryan appointed Professor and Chair of Electrical Engineering. Prof. Ryan introduces the study of high voltage transmission of electric power. Electrical Engineering undergraduate study is made a specialty in ME.
1912 Lee de Forest invents the electronic amplifier at 913 Emerson Street, Palo Alto.
1916 Ray L. Wilbur appointed President of the University
1917 The University goes on the quarter calendar.
1919 First PhD in EE awarded to Leonard F. Fuller, who later became Chair of EE at UC Berkeley.
1920 F.E. Terman graduates in Chemistry.
1922 F.E. Terman receives the Engineer degree in EE and leaves for MIT to obtain a doctorate.
1923 EE Faculty consists of H.J. Ryan (Professor), J.C. Clark (Associate Professor), H.H. Henline (Assistant Professor), and T.H. Morgan and W. Kindy (Instructors)
1924 Henline initiates the Communications Laboratory

Terman receives the D.Sc. at MIT.
1925 School of Engineering established

Theodore Jesse Hoover becomes Dean of Engineering.

All Undergraduate degrees in Engineering to be given by the School, no longer by Departments. F. E.

Terman appointed half-time Instructor in EE.

Terman, a ham radio operator, introduces courses in Radio.

The Ryan High Voltage Laboratory is opened with substantial financial support from the Power Industry and the City of Los Angeles.
1926 F.E. Terman takes over the Communications Lab.
1928 H. H. Skilling appointed as Instructor (acting) in EE.
1931 H. J. Ryan becomes Emeritus

H.H. Skilling receives his PhD from Stanford.

Ward Kindy appointed Acting Chair of EE and remains so until 1937, during which time the Department basically remained Kindy, Terman, Carroll, Skilling, Brown, and Bill Hoover
1936 Jessie Hoover retires as Dean of Engineering and Samuel Morris of Civil Engineering is appointed Dean of Engineering
1937 F.E.Terman appointed EE Chair

The Klystron is invented by the Varian brothers and W.W Hansen.
1938 Karl Spangenberg appointed to the EE faculty. He introduces courses and research in Vacuum Tubes.
1939 The Hewlett-Packard company is formed
1941 O.G. Villard is appointed and leads research in radio wave propagation.

Edward Ginzton receives his PhD in EE from Stanford.
1942 J.M. Pettit receives his PhD in EE from Stanford.
1943 Donald B. Tresidder appointed President of the University
1941 The University celebrates its 50th Anniversary

December 7 Pearl Harbor is attacked by Japan

December 8 USA enters WWII.
1942 F. E. Terman goes to Harvard to head the Radio Research Laboratory (RRL).

H.H. Skilling made acting Chair of EE in Terman's absence
1944 F.E. Terman appointed Dean of Engineering

Hugh H. Skilling appointed Head of EE and Acting Dean until Terman's return in 1945.
1945 First M.A. in EE awarded, soon changed to the M.S.

Ginzton appointed Assistant Professor of EE and of Physics.

The Klystron project is transferred from EE to Physics.
1946 The Microwave Laboratory is founded in the Physics Department and housed on the quad, with W.W. Hansen as its first Director.
1947 The first Linear Accelerator is designed and built under the guidance of W. W. Hansen of Physics and E. Ginzton of Electrical Engineering.

Joint Services Electronics Contract is signed, starting large scale Federal support of Department Research.
1949 The Microwave Laboratory moves into a new building and Edward Ginzton becomes director. The Lab will later become the Ginzton Laboratory.
1948 Donald B. Tresidder dies and J. E. W. Sterling appointed President of the University.
1951 Electronics Research Laboratory (ERL) opens. Construction continues through 1956 with significant support from HP and Gilfillan.
1954 William Shockley, coinventor of the first transistor in 1947, appointed Lecturer. He will remain a Lecturer being appointed Professor of Electrical Engineering in 1963.

Honors Cooperative Program begins providing access to Stanford EE degrees by working engineers.
1955 Terman appointed Provost

First Stanford courses in digital and analog computing taught by Lecturer Allen M. Petersen, who becomes an Assistant Professor the following year. Peterson also ran the IBM 650 computer in ERL (the only air-conditioned room in the building). Students had only a single try to hand in their course project IBM cards for running on the machine, which had 2 kilobytes of memory. Ron Bracewell arrives as Associate Professor, initiating work on Radio Astronomy. John Linvill arrives as Associate Professor, expanding work in Solid State. 

William Shockley founds Shockley Semiconductors in Palo Alto, a seminal, if not successful, company in Silicon Valley. Two years later 8 engineers will leave Shockley Semiconductors to found Fairchild Semiconductors, which in turn will spawn Intel Corporation in 1968. Shockley shared the 1957 Nobel Prize.
1957 Gene Farthing Franklin appointed as Assistant Professor, moving classes on servomechanisms into the systems and control age.
1958 Pettit appointed Dean of Engineering

Applied Electronics Laboratory (AEL) constructed to support military classified research in electronic countermeasures.
1964 J. G. Linvill appointed Chair of EE
1969 The Stanford Instructional Television Network begins broadcasting EE classes to Silicon Valley.

Durand Building constructed and the H.H. Skilling classroom facility constructed.
1970 The AEL building is occupied by students and others who demand that the University discontinue all classified research.
1972 W. Kays appointed Dean of Engineering
1981 R. L. White appointed Chair of EE
1984 The Center for Integrated Systems building is opened.
1984 J. Gibbons appointed Dean of Engineering
1986 Quate appointed Chair of EE
1988 Goodman appointed Chair of EE
1994 Franklin appointed Acting Chair
1995 Goodman returns as Chair of EE

W. Gates Building for Computer Science opens, dedicated in 1996.

National Research Council study ranks Stanford EE graduate program first.
1996 Bruce Wooley appointed Acting Chair

J. Hennessy appointed Dean of Engineering
1997 James D. Plummer appointed Chair of EE.
1999 John Hennessey appointed Provost.

In June, the Packard building opens.
1999 James D. Plummer appointed Dean of Engineering

Bruce Wooley appointed Chair
9/00 John L. Hennessy appointed President
2009 Mark Horowitz appointed Chair of EE
2012 Abbas El Gamal appointed Chair of EE