First-Hand:History of an ASEE Fellow - Jerry Yeargan (1940-2017)


History of an ASEE Fellow

Jerry R. Yeargan (1940-2017)

As of January 2018 Written by Lyle Feisel

Birthplace: Kirby, Arkansas

Born: January 31, 1940

Died: March 31, 2017


Jerry was one of four children born to Edward and Tacy Yeargan. He was married to Jane Evans Yeargan and the couple have two children and two grandchildren.


Jerry’s early education was in Arkansas, where he was valedictorian of his high school class. He attended Henderson State Teachers College for two years and then transferred to the University of Arkansas where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in electrical engineering. After working for Texas Instruments in Dallas for a time, he returned to the university and received a PhD in electrical engineering.


He taught for 40 years at the University of Arkansas where he also served as Head of the Electrical Engineering Department and as Head of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering.

Research and Scholarship

Jerry conducted research in materials and devices and held the Texas Instruments Chair in Linear Microelectronics at the University of Arkansas

Philosophy of Engineering Education

Jerry believed in close personal engagement with students and he was highly regarded by students and peers alike. He is the recipient of various awards recognizing excellence in teaching. 

ASEE Activities

He was active in ASEE throughout his career, including serving as chair of the ASEE Electrical Engineering Division.

Other Professional Activities

In addition to his involvement with ASEE, Jerry was very active in other professional societies and endeavors. He held many offices in IEEE, including president of the IEEE Education Society, Vice President for Education, and member of the Board of Directors. He represented IEEE with ABET for many years and served as the president of ABET. He was a driving force in the merger of ABET and the Computer Science Accreditation Board. As an expert in accreditation and a master at diplomacy, Jerry provided guidance to engineering education in many countries in Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America.

He has received many awards in recognition of his accomplishments and was a Fellow of IEEE, a Fellow of the International Engineering Consortium, and a charter member of the Pan American Academy of Engineering.

Further information about Dr. Yeargan can be found on his ETHW biographical article.