Welcome to the Geotechnical Engineering Homepage


Trevor D. Smith, Ph.D., PE (TX)
Engineering Building 2nd floor
Brief Bio

Link to CEE Homepage

trevor smith

2014-2015 Graduate Student Assistants

Alex Baumann
Alex Baumann
Graduate TA
Natalie Ehrlich
Natalie Ehrlich
The CEE Maseeh 2014-15 Scholar
The Geotechnical program is proud to recognize Natalie Ehrlich as the recipient of the prestigious Maseeh Graduate Fellowship. Only one fellowship per year is awarded to each CECS Department. While completing the required undergraduate soil mechanics and engineering geology courses during her junior year, Natalie’s interest in all things subsurface was sparked. The two internships that followed gave her hands-on experience in geotechnical field and design work, and helped solidify her decision to pursue a master’s degree in the subject. In 2013, she graduated with her Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Portland State and entered the graduate program. Natalie feels fortunate to be able to remain at Portland State for her graduate studies, where she has had the opportunity to teach undergraduate civil engineering students in the very soil mechanics laboratory course that first opened her eyes to the subject. Natalie is slated to complete her master’s degree under the advising of Dr. Trevor Smith in the spring of 2015

Discipline Overview for Geotechnical and Foundation Engineering

This civil engineering discipline entails the solution of all subsurface engineering problems. Geotechnical engineers are responsible for conducting and interpreting site investigations, the measurement of the soil's hydraulic and physical properties, and all subsurface design for civil structures. These include: dams, harbors, bridges, levees, retaining walls, tanks, tunnels, highways, and all major structures. The geotechnical discipline is now multi-discipline, skilled in traditional foundation engineering and in the maturing geo-environmental discipline to demonstrate sustainability. Geotechnical engineering calls for the blend of qualitative judgment with analytical solutions to meet the subsurface challenges in today's infrastructure.