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Siriwardane appointed chair of civil and environmental engineering

A photo of Hema Siriwardane.

 Hema Siriwardane has been named chair of civil and environmental engineering.


Hema Siriwardane, professor of civil and environmental engineering at West Virginia University, was appointed chair of the department for a five-year term, effective April 16.

Siriwardane, who had been serving as interim chair since August 2016, has been on the faculty in the Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources for more than 35 years.

“Dr. Siriwardane’s years of experience in the College and his performance as interim chair made him the ideal candidate for the job,” said Gene Cilento, Glen H. Hiner Dean. “I look to him to expand and strengthen the Department’s research capabilities and to grow its undergraduate and graduate recruitment efforts and educational programs.”

“I am honored to have been selected to be the Department chairman,” said Siriwardane. “I look forward to working with students, staff, faculty, college administration, alumni and all other constituents that make up our community. Together, we can continue to strengthen the Department.”

Siriwardane has conducted extensive research in geotechnical engineering and geomechanics. He has experience in both computer modeling and laboratory research work and has served in a number of national and international committees dealing with geomechanics. He has published extensively in prestigious national and international journals and is the co-author of a book in his area of expertise.

He has served as principal/co-principal investigator for various projects funded by such agencies as the U.S. Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation, the West Virginia Division of Highways and the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration. Siriwardane has supported and advised numerous graduate students at WVU and he has won many awards for his teaching, research and service.

Siriwardane replaces Radhey Sharma, who was named associate vice president for Global Strategy and International Affairs at WVU.



For more information on news and events in the West Virginia University Benjamin M. Statler College of Engineering and Mineral Resources:


Phone contacts:
College Relations office: 304-293-4086
Office of the Dean: 304-293-4157
Other College administrative and department offices: Administration