Robert Hayes, EE 1957

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Robert Hayes, EE 1957


The following is a Living History Interview with Dr. Robert D. Hayes, Georgia Tech class of 1957 and 1964, conducted by Marilyn Somers on November 14, 1995 at his home in Marietta, GA. The subject of the interview is student life at Georgia Tech. Maurice Long was Dr. Hayes's main influence to why he came to Tech. He was able to work with Dr. Long and Dr. Boyd while pursuing his Master's degree. He remembers liking Dr. Pearland's math classes. He notes that his experience as being a student at Tech was very different than many others. He only attended part-time, and he was very focused because he had a job to do and a family to provide for. He mentions Dr. Rhodes, Dr. Crawford, and Dr. Meeks, among others previously listed, as colleagues in research of World War II textbooks. He describes the Experiment Station, and how Tech came to offer a doctorate in Physics. Horace Sturgis offered Dr. Hayes a master's degree for $15. He had earned all of the credits, and everything else was just a technicality. He knew he was working towards his doctorate, but never missed a football game. Ben Dasher approached him about teaching, and Dr. Hayes accepted; he felt comfortable teaching in the classroom because he had done so at the University of Kentucky. He talks about the demonstrations on campus after the incident at Kent State University, and how Tech is a very conservative school. He talks about the name change of Georgia School of Technology to Georgia Institute of Technology. He also talks about Ed Harrison and his influence on integration. At times the students were very rebellious, and smoking was not an issue in class. Dr. Hayes has worked under many Presidents of Georgia Tech: Van Leer, Harrison, Weber, Hanson, Crawford, and Pettit. He talks in length about Dr. Pettit and how Dr. Hayes was influential in his Presidency. Vernon Crawford's involvement on the Board of Regents has been very helpful to Tech in reference to pay raises and getting new equipment. For two years Dr. Hayes worked in Florida before moving back to Atlanta, in much delight to his wife. His worked was more about getting graduate students. A lot of the research that he has done has had many practical applications. His work has been used in the Army, Navy, and the Air Force. He was the first professor at Tech to teach a television class, which was very popular because the labs involved fixing television sets. Dr. Hayes is keeping very busy throughout his retirement. He feels very fortunate that he has been able to travel around the world, and for his unique situation as both student and professor at Tech.


1995 November 14