Charles Sukup, who earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural engineering from Iowa State in 1976 and 1982, began a five-year, part-time appointment this fall.
“We are fortunate to have the industry leadership and experience Charles brings to our department to share with our students,” said Steve Mickelson, ABE department chair. “Our program is so highly ranked because we attract students who want to learn from the best faculty – and having guidance from Charles will add to our strength.”
Sukup will advise the department chair on key initiatives such as strategic planning and strengthening engagement with industry, and serve on departmental committees focused on international programs and awards. He will also be available to lecture in classes and senior capstone courses.
“It is a great opportunity to share what I have learned in my career with a new generation of engineering leaders,” said Sukup. “Being back at Iowa State to work with students, faculty and staff is an honor and something that gives me great pleasure.”
Last September, Sukup was inducted into the National Academy of Engineering at a ceremony in Washington, D.C. where he received the highest professional distinction accorded an engineer. The ABE department now has two current faculty who are members of this prestigious academy – Sukup and Ronald Leonard, associate professor, who was elected in 1999.
For several years, Iowa State’s ABE department has been ranked in the top three by U.S. News and World Report as the nation’s best undergraduate and graduate programs in biological and agricultural engineering. Since 1905, the Iowa State ABE department has been a leader in providing engineering and technical solutions for agriculture, government and industry. The nation’s first agricultural engineering program has evolved to encompass a global and interdisciplinary view of modern agricultural and biological systems. The program includes environmental stewardship, plant and animal production, biorenewable energy, biobased materials, farm safety, occupational safety, manufacturing and advance innovation in off-road equipment design.
Sukup Manufacturing Co. is the world’s largest family-owned and operated grain storage, drying and handling equipment manufacturer. The company is headquartered in Sheffield, Iowa, and covers 1,000,000 square feet of office, manufacturing and warehouse space. The company employs more than 600 people, making it one of the largest employers in north-central Iowa. Three generations of the family are now active in the business. Sukup has six distribution centers located throughout the Midwest. Sukup products are sold throughout the U.S. and Canada, as well as more than 80 countries.