Distinguished Alumni Awards

William Earl Shoupp

William Earl Shoupp
To William Earl Shoupp, nuclear physicist, research administrator, for his outstanding leadership in converting nuclear science into a major area of industrial research with the subsequent emergence of nuclear energy as a practical source of power.

Vice President and General Manager of Research Laboratories, Westinghouse Electric Corporation, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

  • AB, Physics, 1931
  • PhD, Physics, 1937

Dr. Shoupp began his career with Westinghouse Research Laboratories in 1938 and has held positions involving the direction of research on nuclear power since 1943. Shortly after joining Westinghouse, he and his co-workers discovered the fission of uranium by gamma rays, which played a role in the harnessing of nuclear energy. After World War II, he was instrumental in persuading the Navy and the Atomic Energy Commission that nuclear energy should be used to power submarines, from which came the first submarine reactor that powered the Nautilus.

As vice president and general manager, he now directs the work of 550 scientists and engineers working in all fields of the physical sciences. His rare combination of talents, his high level of technical skills combined with an ability to communicate effectively at all levels, his extraordinary ability to perceive and handle the most complex detail, and his own personal enthusiasm have created an atmosphere which attracts and holds people of exceptional ability and elicits from them that extra effort so often necessary to success.

Current as of 1967.