Dr.  Garrett Love

Engineering Department Chair

Instructor of Engineering

Directory Information

The oldest of seven children and a product of Aberdeen, ID and Tilton, NH, Dr. Garrett Love received degrees in Civil Engineering from MIT and Duke University in 1991 and 2001, respectively.  Dr. Love comes from a family of educators, with four siblings who are either teachers or married to teachers.


How did Dr. Love first become interested in Engineering?

Dr. Love grew up under the influence of his grandfather, who was an airplane mechanic in WWII.  He also vividly remembers his father working as a surveyor when he was a young child.  Dr. Love has always had a knack for discovering the wonders of science and engineering such as meteorites or butterflies and caterpillars.

Where did Dr. Love attend undergraduate/graduate school and how did he decide what to major in and focus on?

During middle and high school, Dr. Love did a lot of programming, so when he attended undergraduate at MIT he majored in civil engineering so that he could have the opportunity to do some good in the world.  When he returned to school to go to graduate school at Duke, he looks for a civil engineering program in non-linear computational contact mechanics so that he could be the "world expert in crashing things together using a computer."  The book "Chaos" by James Glick had a major impact on his life and spurred his interest in non-linear mechanics.

What did Dr. Love do before coming to NCSSM?  

His academic studies were complemented by a tour of service as a high school mathematics teacher in Helena, Arkansas with Teach for America (1991-1994), and by a 5-year stint (2001-2005) as a staff scientist with the Shodor Education Foundation, "a non-profit research and education organization dedicated to the advancement of science and math education, specifically through the use of modeling and simulation technologies". Dr. Love joined the faculty of North Carolina Central University in the fall of 2005, serving ten years and earning tenure as a professor in the Department of Environmental, Earth and Geospatial Sciences.   After a semester of experience teaching IVC Honors Aerospace with NCSSM DEEP, he joined the NCSSM faculty full time in 2015 as an Instructor of Engineering.

What are Dr. Love's academic interests?

Dr. Love has a long-time interest in the development of curricular materials for enhancing engineering and other STEM education through computation, having designed online curricular models and lessons for Shodor, a proposed undergraduate major in Computational Science for NCCU, and a module for NCCU Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics entitled "The Scientist and the Super Model" focused on modeling and simulation, reprised as "Stars, Storms and Sims" for NCSSM Summer Accelerator 2016. He is currently involved with an educational development project titled "CompHydro - Integrating Data Computation and Visualization to Build Model-based Water Literacy" through Shodor and University collaborators in Arizona, Montana, Colorado and Maryland.

What does Dr. Love do after hours?

Dr. Love has a 9-year old son and a wife, who teaches theater at East Chapel Hill High School

In his spare time, Dr. Love coaches a soccer team of 9-year old girls, and he plays the accordion.  He also plays and collects board games, with a whole wall full of games to prove it.

What is Dr. Love's favorite thing about NCSSM?

Dr. Love loves the academic level of the institution and the fact that he can explore new things like rocketry and aerospace. He also loves that there is no pressure to be an academic, but you CAN be.

If Dr. Love could give NCSSM students one piece of advice, what would it be?

"Choose to do things because you like them, not because you have to do them."

"Be delibrate."

"Find your authentic passion."