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Genevieve Gagnon


Mechanical Engineering

  • Education
  • PhD, Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne (EPFL), Switzerland
    MS and BS, Materials Engineering, Ecole Polytechnique de Montreal, Quebec, Canada.

Originally from Montreal, Quebec in Canada, Dr. Gagnon joined the University of St. Thomas in 2010. She teaches or has taught the undergraduate Energy and the Environment lecture and labs (ENGR123), the engineering materials labs (ENGR361), the mechanics of materials lecture and labs (ENGR221), the statics labs (ENGR220) as well as the materials engineering graduate course (ETLS771).

The main subject of her research was the thermal fatigue of ceramic-reinforced aluminum composites. She focused on the analysis and characterization of materials, particularly the fracture mechanism, using mechanical testing. Furthermore, she specialized in surface analysis through fine microscopy such as both scanning and transmission electron microscopy. Her main achievement in science was to develop an in-situ thermal cycling device that allowed thermal cycling of materials under observation in a transmission microscope in order to film the deformation and fracture mechanics as they occurred.

As a Swiss federal employee, she also worked with industries such as Alusuisse to cast new composite materials. Dr. Gagnon has presented at numerous international conferences and published a dozen research papers. She also tutored at the University of Kyoto in Japan for a year.

Her mission now at St. Thomas is to develop 'excellence in engineering education' which includes building more bridges between academia and the industry both nationally and internationally and developing new teaching methods. Dr. Gagnon has been developing her current class to improve the use of technologies such as Canvas, Panopto and Zoom, online homework, full lecture video capture and remote capture of problem solving sections. Furthermore, these technologies allow the students to access course information anytime (24/7). She believes the use of new teaching methods and technology will allow the University of St. Thomas to reach excellence in engineering education.

Dr. Gagnon is also passionate about bringing more diversity to St. Thomas and finding new ways to help the developing countries with their struggles with access to energy and technology.