The deadline for engineering professors to apply for a seat in the International Geosynthetics Societey’s non-commercial Educate the Educators program (4 – 5 December 2017, Kingston, Ontario) is approaching. All interested engineering professors must submit their application by June 1 to IGS North America.

Photo: Engineering Professors at the Educate the Educators Session, Austin, Texas 2015
Educate the Educators participants in Austin, Texas (2015)

The two-day geosynthetics training program delivers practical engineering information to engineering professors, who can then return to their colleges with strategies and resources for incorporating geosynthetics into their lesson plans.


The December 2017 edition of Educate the Educators will select ~35 engineering professors who can incorporate geosynthetics into programs that have previously not done so or which have done so in a limited capacity. Prior to the highly successful 2015 EtE in Texas, which welcomed 45 professors, fewer than 10% of engineering programs in North America were found to regularly include geosynthetics–despite the fact that geosynthetic materials are utilized in every major sector of civil engineering.
“Educate the Educators provides specialized, hands-on training and lecture materials to equip attending professors with the tools they need offer effective geosynthetics course work in their engineering programs,” writes IGS North America. “Attending professors receive instruction, course materials (including powerpoint presentations, hand outs, and sample binders) and have continued access to the instructors as they develop their own programs at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. Building on the success of EtE Austin, held in 2015, participants will receive training and educational material on the fundamentals of geosynthetics as well as exposure to the state-of-knowledge on geosynthetics in reinforcement and environmental applications.”
Tencate Geotube in mining
Expert instruction for the EtE program will include:

  • Kerry Rowe (Queen’s University)
  • Richard J. Bathurst (Royal Military College of Canada)
  • Richard Brachman (Queens University)
  • Jorge Zornberg (University of Texas – Austin)

Queen’s University is an ideal host. The Kingston, Ontario, Canada school is the site of one of the world’s most renowned geotechnical engineering programs, both for its own initiatives and for its close collaboration with Royal Military College. Their engineering programs coordinate activities at the GeoEngineering Centre.
Also of note for the December 2017 EtE, a second component has been added: Educate the Students (EtS).
Educate the Educators - IGS North America


IGS North America has documented the beneficial impact of Educate the Educators for the 2015 participants. The numbers:

  • 40% of 2015 EtE attendees’ university programs contained NO geosynthetic content prior to the EtE event. 87% of those professors responded with a plan to incorporate the EtE programming at their institution either through a 50-minute introduction to geosynthetics or by incorporating geosynthetics in various ways when the existing course work’s context could properly utilize the information.
    • 37% added geosynthetics content in the 2015 – 2016 school year
    • 25% added geosynthetics content in the 2016 – 2017 school year
    • 25% were developing programs to be added in the 2017 – 2018 school year
  • Also of note, of the 60% attending programs that had at least a small amount of geosynthetics education included, 82% determined to increase the content beginning in 2015 – 2016.


The EtE program is about educating the next generation of engineers. In that spirit, IGS North America has added an Educate the Students component directly into the EtE activities—bringing professors and students into a mutually beneficial learning environment.
More information on the EtS: Guest Lecture Series for University Students will be made available soon.
Learn more about IGS North America at
Apply to attend Educate the Educators here.
Queens RMC Barrier Research Project


Geosynthetics-related companies (manufacturers, consulting firms, etc.) can sponsor this Educate the Educators event to keep geosynthetics information flowing to the next generation. Contact John Henderson ( for more information or call +1 706 693 1836.