Dr. Scott Steckenrider
Department Chair & Professor of Engineering
Office Location: Euler 237
Phone: (765) 998-4525
Specialties: holography), laser speckle, materials characterization (especially ceramic materials), nondestructive evaluation: optical methods (interferometry, optical meteorology, phased-array), photoacoustic, thermography, ultrasonics (conventional
PhD, Materials Science & Engineering, The Johns Hopkins University, 1992 MS, Materials Science, The Johns Hopkins University, 1989 BS, Materials Science & Engineering, The John Hopkins University, 1987
Why I came to Taylor:
When I left the industry to teach at another institution in 2004, it came with a 65% reduction in pay, but my wife and I embraced the transition because teaching is very much a ministry for us. In order to afford the transition, we told our kids that their college savings fund just became the tuition exchange at my previous school. When we were touring schools the summer between my oldest kids' junior and senior years of high school, we were only visiting Christian schools that were on that tuition exchange list. We had an extra afternoon on our way back from the other schools and decided we could visit one school that was not on our list. We were in Indiana and saw that Taylor had been ranked #1 in the Midwest for several years at that point, so we decided to visit.
During our campus tour, we were so positively impacted by both the school and the community expressed by the people with whom we interacted that my wife tells me (she remembers it clearly, but I don't recall this at all) that I turned to her and told her I thought I was going to teach here one day.
Both of my kids loved Taylor, so we made a number of trips back during their senior year. Each time we visited I became more and more convinced that Taylor did education the way God had intended it: in the context of genuine community and relationship. I became increasingly convicted that God would have a place for me at Taylor. As it turns out, a teaching position in Engineering did become available during the following year, so I applied, was offered the position, and accepted.
All three of my children have enrolled at Taylor. My son graduated from the Engineering program in 2016.
Advice to incoming students:
College should be very enjoyable, with all of the new friendships, wing activities, social organizations, etc., but you should also take your schoolwork seriously—it is your full-time job for the next four years. Our culture tries to tell you that college is primarily about "having fun" by giving you adult opportunities without adult responsibilities. However, there is an interesting parallelism at Taylor University: your relationship with your professors is simultaneously one of faculty/student (or mentor/apprentice) and brother/sister in Christ. If you want to maximize your growth from these relationships, it is important that you recognize you are now an adult whose approach to life is different than it may have been in high school. (1 Corinthians 13:11)
- Home improvement & remodeling (construction)
- Music (especially a capella)
- Spending time with my family