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Helen E. Grenga Papers

Identifier: MS141

  • Staff Only


As the first female engineering professor at Georgia Tech, Dr. Helen Grenga's role on campus was not only as a teacher, but as a mentor and a leader. This collection contains correspondence, class materials, project reports, publications and speeches.


  • 1963-1994 (bulk 1972-1983)
  • Majority of material found within 1972 - 1983


General Physical Description note

(six document cases)

Restrictions: Access


Restrictions: Use

Permission to publish materials from this collection must be obtained from the Head of Archives and Special Collections


2.4 Linear Feet

Scope and Contents

The first box in the Helen Grenga Papers contains materials relating to her academic career. Resumes, applications, and letters of recommendation from students and colleagues document her promotion from Associate Professor to Full Professor in the School of Chemical Engineering in 1976. Ephemera on the subject of women in engineering is contained in Box 1, Folder 3. The remainder of the box consists of Society of Women Engineers at Georgia Tech resume books.

Class materials include class notes, tests, and syllabi. The majority of the classes she taught were in metallurgy. The administrative files from the Office of Graduate Studies and Research include phone numbers, meeting times, and memoranda.

Dr. Grenga conducted several projects based on grants from the National Science Foundation. These proposals and reports constitute the third series. A few are pending or incomplete, with notes of explanation from Dr. Grenga.

Dr. Grenga grouped publications and speeches together as part of her own filing system, which has been maintained in series 4. Consequently, the transcripts of speeches she presented at conferences, such as the Metallurgy Society Conference, are interspersed with articles she wrote. Other authors wrote the last three papers, including a student doctoral thesis for which she was the advisor.

Biography of Helen Eva Grenga (1938-)

Dr. Helen Grenga obtained her B.A. in Chemistry in 1960 from Shorter College and her Ph.D. in Physical Chemistry from the University of Virginia in 1967. She was employed by the Food and Drug Administration for a few years until she began her career in academics.

When she was hired by Georgia Tech in 1963, she became the first female engineering professor. During this time, she served for a year as the president of the Society of Women Engineers. Dr. Grenga also held administrative positions on campus, serving as director in the Office of Graduate Studies and Research and a dean in the Office of Academic Affairs. She now holds the position of professor emeritus in the Materials Science and Engineering Department.

In 2001 Dr. Grenga published a book entitled Movies on the Fantail. She edited her brother James Grenga's diary and other sailors' accounts aboard the destroyer USS Barr.


Missing Title

  1. Series 1. Educator, 1969-1994.
  2. Series 2. Office of Graduate Studies and Research, 1978-1984.
  3. Series 3. Projects, 1964-1982.
  4. Series 4. Publications and Speeches, 1963-1976.

This collection is arranged into four series. Materials dealing with Dr. Grenga's academic teaching career, such as classes and correspondence, are grouped into the first series. Administrative files from the Office of Graduate Research are contained in the second series. Projects Dr. Grenga conducted under National Science Foundation grants are contained in the third series. Publications and transcripts of speeches are grouped together in the fourth series by original order.

Other Finding Aids

A print copy of this finding aid is available in the Georgia Tech Archives reading room.


Helen Grenga donated these papers in 1999 (Accession #1999.0502; old number: 99-05-02).

General Physical Description note

(six document cases)

Processing Information

Yen M. Tang processed these papers in 2002.

Inventory of the Helen E. Grenga Papers, 1963-1994 (bulk 1972-1983)
Yen M. Tang
Copyright 2002.
Description rules
Finding Aid Updated Using Rlg Best Practice Guidelines For Encoded Archival Description
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Archives and Special Collections, Library, Georgia Institute of Technology Repository

Georgia Institute of Technology
266 4th Street, NW
Atlanta 30332-0900 USA