College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Capstone instructor, accomplished engineer, and Iowa State alumnus Michael Anderson Retires

Professor of practice, Michael Anderson in front of the Sukup Atrium ceiling art.
Professor of practice, Michael Anderson in front of the Sukup Atrium ceiling art.

Michael Anderson, professor of practice in the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering (ABE), has been an important part of hundreds of undergraduate students’ experiences. He has led the capstone courses for ABE and TSM majors for the past five years.

With an accomplished industry career, Anderson has been a licensed professional engineer in Iowa, Indiana, and Illinois for 37 years. Attaining his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Iowa State, Anderson was involved in seed conditioning facility and equipment design as well as construction project management for 30 years before he returned as a professor.

“After I retired from the industry, I appreciated the Iowa State opportunity to bring my experience to assist in preparing and mentoring these students for their real career experiences,” said Anderson.

Undergraduate students in ABE programs spend six credits of their last two semesters in Capstone. They work in teams to tackle challenges for industry partners, gaining collaborative hands-on experiences. Anderson acted as an advisor, communications liaison, project manager, and more to support students through this experience.

“Mike Anderson’s calm demeanor makes it seem like he’s doing a job that is steady and straightforward, but running our Capstone courses is anything but. Mike has been amazing at coordinating diverse projects, mentoring teams, and managing all kinds of usual and unusual situations in the courses,” said Amy Kaleita, chair of the Department of Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering.

Anderson and his wife are both retiring as the school year comes to a close. They will be spending time together, deciding what to do next!