Darrell Velegol (26aug2009)autobiography2.236. Just moments before, I had asked Dad, “How do you calculate the square root of 5?” Maybe it was an odd question from an 11 or 12 year old boy. But Dad’s response caught me by surprise. He drew a few graphs and equations on a sheet of paper. Then he took me over to our little gray TRS-80 computer, and we programmed the Newton-Raphson method for solving equations. I didn’t know at the time that Dad was so smart! And I didn’t know that solving equations could be so much fun. Dad had just made the Newton-Raphson method come to life. I’ve always loved solving equations. That love led me to get my BS in Chemical Engineering at West Virginia University in 1992, and then my PhD in Chemical Engineering at Carnegie Mellon in 1997. On 01jun1999, I started as an assistant professor here at Penn State. And I’ve had the time of my life –watching students’ eyes see their life purpose, and equipping their hands with a few tools for a journey of excellence. Now 10 years later, I’m “full professor”.
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