LU remembers and honors Dr. Kendrick Aung

Lamar University mourns the passing of Dr. Kendrick Aung, a faculty member since 2001.

Aung was a professor in the College of Engineering who taught mechanical engineering and had served as aung-resize2.jpginterim department chair since June 2020. He was a gifted teacher, exceptional mentor always enthusiastic about his work with students and his research and an acclaimed academic who devoted himself to his discipline.

“Ken and I started at LU around the same time, about 20 years,” said Dr. Brian Craig, dean of the College of Engineering. “Ken was a well-respected colleague to all who met him and dearly loved by his students. Ken was a very kind and caring colleague and faculty member. Beyond that, Ken was my friend.”

At the undergraduate level, Aung taught dynamics, engineering thermodynamics I, engineering thermodynamics II, fluid mechanics, measurements lab, seminar, thermal systems design, integrated systems design and senior design project. He also taught graduate classes including advanced engineering analysis and optimization of thermal systems. He taught a variety of elective courses at both the undergraduate and graduate levels.

Aung, a mechanical engineering graduate from Rangoon Institute of Technology in Burma, earned his master’s degree in energy technology from Asian Institute of Technology in Thailand and his doctorate in aerospace from the University of Michigan. Aung was a post-doctoral fellow at Georgia Institute of Technology in Atlanta, Georgia from 1996-1998. In January 1999, he joined the Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering at the University of Southern California as a research assistant professor. In 2001, he joined Lamar University as an assistant professor in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.

While at Lamar University, Aung mentored more than 50 senior Capstone design teams, and several of those teams won prizes and scholarships in regional and national design competitions such as SAE Baja and Texas Space Grant Consortium Design Challenge. He served as faculty mentor to two McNair Scholars and he sponsored a paper published by a group of undergraduate students, “A Parametric Study of a 4-Stroke Motorcycle Exhaust System,” 2004 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and RD&D Exposition, Anaheim, CA in November 2004. Aung also received six senior design project grants from American Society of Heating, Refrigeration and Air-Conditioning Engineers.

The beloved teacher and colleague received the Presidential Faculty Fellow for Innovation in Teaching Activity award in 2014 and 2015 and the Distinguished Faculty Fellow for Teaching award twice, 2015-2018 and 2018-2021. He received the Presidential Fellowship in Research in 2014 and the Tim Kendall Memorial Prize from the Asian Institute of Technology in 1991.

Aung was the recipient of 2019 University Professor Award. This is the most prestigious award for a faculty member at Lamar. Detailed as in the link below. 


Aung was the faculty advisor for Lamar University’s Sigma Xi section of Pi Tau Sigma Mechanical Engineering Society, the LU American Society of Mechanical Engineers student chapter, the LU Society of Automotive Engineers student section and the LU American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers student section.

Aung was well-known in the field of mechanical engineering. His research on renewable energy and energy systems, hydrogen flames and combustion and alternative fuels was widely published and presented at engineering conferences.

“Ken leaves a legacy of hard work, passion for his teaching and devotion to students and his colleagues,” said Craig. “He made an impact on Lamar University, and we will miss him dearly.”