Pioneering alumnus honored with honorary doctorate

Arthur J. Bond (BSEE ’68, MSEE ’69, PhD ’74), dean of the School of Engineering and Technology at Alabama A&M University, has been awarded an honorary doctor of engineering degree at Purdue.

Arthur J. BondHaving distinguished himself as an accomplished engineer, educator, administrator, and student mentor, Bond’s students remember him as someone who opened doors where no one really knew they existed.

While working toward a Ph.D. in electrical engineering, he began his 15-year tenure at Purdue University as the first coordinator of a new “Program for Disadvantaged Students” in freshman engineering. In 1971, there were 28 minority students enrolled in Purdue engineering programs; by 1978, there were 304. In seeking a way for his students to mentor one another, Bond is credited as the founder, and Purdue as the birthplace, of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). The organization started with six members and has grown to 20,000 members, 268 student chapters and 50 technical/alumni chapters.

Following his time at Purdue, Bond played significant roles in the corporate sector and later rejoined the academic ranks. He served in faculty and administrative roles at Tuskegee University and Alabama A&M University. Bond’s work at any one of the institutions could constitute lifetime achievement for many people. And yet, in addition, his commitment to the success of his students has led to many more engineering leaders - some of whom also have been recognized by Purdue as distinguished engineering alumni.

A native of Midlothian, Ill., Bond is a graduate of Bremen Community High School and currently resides in Madison, Ala. with his wife of 41 years, Carolyn.