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LETU Honors Welding Engineering Professor Bill Kielhorn at Dedication of Lab


LeTourneau University dedicated its Materials Joining Engineering Building Thursday with a new name in honor of longtime engineering professor Bill Kielhorn.

The lab now is the Kielhorn Welding Engineering Lab.

Kielhorn, who has never missed a class during his 45 years of teaching at the university, was recently featured on ABCNEWS.com for teaching the final class of his career from his hospital bed in the Intensive Care Unit of Good Shepherd Medical Center in Longview last Thursday. Kielhorn was released from the hospital for a few hours so he could attend the ceremony.

Materials joining engineering professor Dr. Yoni Adonyi presented a special, torch-cutting event to honor Kielhorn and to celebrate $1.15 million in renovations to the building that will take place this summer, which includes 1,800 square feet of expansion, making it the largest stand-alone welding lab of its kind in the country.

Funding for the $1.15 million includes nearly $800,000 from the National Science Foundation through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act., as well as $150,000 from alumni and friends and $200,000 from the university.

Renovation upgrades include a complete overhaul of the electrical wiring to the laboratory, increasing the capacity needed to operate complex equipment used in the lab for joining advanced engineering materials. Other upgrades will include improved lighting, roofing, plumbing, ventilation, air conditioning and interior insulation. Completion of the project is expected to be done by Fall 2011.

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