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Richard W. Vawter

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Senior Lecturer of Information Technology and Industrial and Systems Engineering


  • 1993, Masters, Business Administration, University of Southern California
  • 1993, Masters, Information and Operations Management, University of Southern California
  • 1990, Masters, Aerospace Engineering, University of Southern California
  • 1983, Bachelors, Engineering Physics, University of Southern California
  • 1982, Bachelors, Aeronautical Sciences, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
  • 1981, Bachelors, Aeronautics and Astronautics
  • Bachelors, University of California


Although Prof. Richard Vawter hasn't flown for over a decade, he's had plenty of experience in the cockpit—especially as a college student! His undergraduate degrees at both Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Arizona and UCLA were accomplished by literally flying between classes.

Upon completing his Engineering degree at UCLA, Richard Vawter started work at Rockwell International analyzing the dynamic loads placed upon the Space Shuttle during the launch and entry phases of a mission. After the Challenger incident, Richard Vawter was chosen to be part of NASA’s Crew Egress Team and assigned the task to design a system and method for the crew to escape the shuttle during a controlled emergency descent.

Following the resumption of the Space Shuttle flights, Prof. Vawter began taking graduate classes at the School of Engineering. After only one graduate class, Prof. Vawter became hooked on USC, completing Masters degrees in both Aerospace Engineering and Business Administration. After two years as a computer consultant, Prof. Vawter returned to USC and worked for the Marshall School of Business as a Computer Systems and Applications Specialist. During that time, he had the opportunity to fill in for a week teaching an ITP class and discovered his teaching talents when the students started clamoring for him to come back. Prof. Vawter began teaching officially at ITP in 1996 and currently focuses on SAP.

Skiing, scuba diving, woodworking, and bicycling fill Prof. Vawter's hours outside of the classroom.


  • 1999 Information Technology Program, Viterbi School of Engineering Outstanding Teaching Award
  • 2004 Information Technology Program, Viterbi School of Engineering Outstanding Teaching Award
  • 2005 Academic Integration Model - AIM Fellow of Professional Society
  • 2007 Information Technology Program, Viterbi School of Engineering Outstanding Teaching Award
  • Information Technology Program
  • Daniel J Epstein Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering

  • OHE 412
  • Olin Hall of Engineering
  • 3650 McClintock Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90089
  • USC Mail Code: 1456

Contact Information
  • (213) 740-9541
  • vawter@usc.edu


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