Girum Urgessa

Girum Solomon Urgessa, PE

Associate Professor, Structural Engineering
Telephone: (703) 993-1658
Fax: (703) 993-9790
Office: 2222 Long and Kimmy Nguyen Engineering Building


  • PhD, Structural Engineering, The University of New Mexico, 2006
  • MS, Structural Engineering, The University of New Mexico, 2002
  • BS, Civil Engineering, Addis Ababa University, 2000

Teaching [Spring 2017]:

  • CEIE 210 – Statics
  • CEIE 311 – Structural Analysis

Research Interests:

  • Structural Dynamics (emphasis on blast/impact)
  • Composite Materials (emphasis on structural retrofits)
  • Stability (emphasis on temporary structures)

Professional Service:

  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
  • American Concrete Institute (ACI)

Faculty Profile:

Dr. Girum Urgessa is an Associate Professor of Civil Engineering and an Affiliate Faculty of the C4I & Cyber Center at George Mason University. He received his MS and PhD from the University of New Mexico, and his BS from Addis Ababa University. Prior to joining George Mason University in 2007, he was a research engineer in the Applied Science Division of Weidlinger Associates, and a structural engineer at Dekker/Perich/Sabatini both in Albuquerque, NM. His research interests include dynamic response of structures subjected to extreme loads (blast and impact), the use of fiber reinforced polymer composites in structural design and retrofit applications, and structural stability of temporary structures. Dr. Urgessa is currently a member of the ASCE/SEI’s technical committee on dynamic effects, sub-committee on retrofit of structures under dynamic loads. He was a voting member of ACI’s technical committee on blast and impact load effects (ACI 370) and TRB’s technical committee on field testing and non-destructive evaluation of transportation structures (AFF 40). Dr. Urgessa is a licensed professional engineer.


Books and Book Chapters:

  • F.B. Mendonca and G. Urgessa
    “Pre-Test and Analysis of a Reinforced Concrete Slab Subjected to Blast from a Non-Confined Explosive,” in Energetic Materials Research, Applications and New Technologies, Accepted.
  • M. Casey and G. Urgessa
    Rebar Cage Construction and Safety: Best Practices, American Society of Civil Engineers, Reston, VA, November 2012, ISBN# 0784412510.
  • G. Urgessa
    “Retrofitting using Fiber Reinforced Polymer Composite for Blast Protection,” in Blast Protection of Civil Infrastructures and Vehicles using Composites, Woodhead Publishing Ltd., Cambridge, UK, April 2010, pp. 375-389, ISBN# 184569399X.

Journal Articles:

Conference Papers:

  • F.B. Mendonca, G. Urgessa and J.A.F.F. Rocco
    “Blast Response of 60 MPa Reinforced Concrete Slabs Subjected to Non-Confined Plastic Explosives” 2017 Structures Congress, American Society of Civil Engineers, Denver, CO (accepted).
  • F.B. Mendonca, J.A.F.F. Rocco, K. Iha and G. Urgessa
    “Blast Response of Reinforced Concrete Slabs with Varying Standoff and Steel Reinforcement Ratios,” The 42nd International Pyrotechnics Society Conference, Grand Junction, CO, July 2016 (extended abstract).
  • G. Urgessa and S. Mohamadi
    “Structural Assessment of Fiber-reinforced Polymer Composite Electric Poles,” Procedia Engineering 145, International Conference on Sustainable Design, Engineering and Construction, Tempe, AZ, May 2016, pp. 707-714.
  • C. Dean, G. Urgessa and M. Azarbayejani
    “Aircraft Wing and Aerodynamic Analysis using Integrated MATLAB and STADD.Pro Models,” Proceedings of the Eighth International Structural Engineering and Construction Conference, Sydney, November 2015, pp. 405-410.
  • R. Sobeski and G. Urgessa
    “Concrete Material Flow during Projectile Penetration,” Proceedings of the 2014 Structures Congress, American Society of Civil Engineers, Boston, MA, April 2014, pp. 2048-2059.
  • W. Ali and G. Urgessa
    “Structural Capacities of Spherically Voided Biaxial Slabs (SVBS),” Proceedings of the 2014 Structures Congress, American Society of Civil Engineers, Boston, MA, April 2014, pp. 785-796.
  • S. Fakhriyazdi and G. Urgessa
    “Analysis of a Horizontally Curved I-Girder Bridge for Blast Loading,” Proceedings of the Seventh International Structural Engineering and Construction Conference, Honolulu, HI, July 2013, 7 pages.
  • C. Maloney and G. Urgessa
    “Blast Overpressure Effects on Bio-mechanical Systems,” Proceedings of the Twelfth International Congress and Exposition on Experimental and Applied Mechanics, Society for Experimental Mechanics, Costa Mesa, CA, June 2012, 8 pages.
  • P. Jenkins and G. Urgessa
    “Probabilistic Mechanics of Explosive Fragmentation,” Proceedings of the Twelfth Pan American Congress of Applied Mechanics, January 2012, 6 pages.
  • C. Chuk, G. Urgessa and H. Thippeswamy
    “Numerical Analysis of Stresses for Cured-In-Place-Pipe (CIPP) Linings,” Proceedings of the Sixth International Conference on Fluid Structure Interaction, Orlando, FL, May 2011, pp. 283-294.
  • M. Cruz and G. Urgessa
    “Numerical Evaluation of Mode-II Delamination in Layered Fiber-reinforced Composites,” The 4th Annual Virginia-North Carolina LSAMP Research Symposium, Charlottesville, VA, April 2011, 12 pages.
  • G. Urgessa
    “Finite Element Analysis of Two-dimensional Strain Consolidation under Foundation Loads,” Proceedings of the Sixteenth US National Congress of Theoretical and Applied Mechanics (extended abstract), State College, PA, July 2010, 2 pages.
  • G. Urgessa and T. Arciszewski
    “Structural Behavior of Steel Frame Connections Subjected to Blast,” Proceedings of the Fifth International Structural Engineering and Construction Conference, Las Vegas, NV, September 2009, pp. 363-368.
  • M. Casey, G. Urgessa and M. Venigalla
    “Re-examining the Core Computational Skill Set of Civil Engineering Undergraduates,” American Society of Engineering Education Middle Atlantic Section Spring Conference, Baltimore, MD, April 2009, 9 pages.
  • G. Urgessa and A. Maji
    “Blast Response of Carbon-fiber Reinforced Masonry Walls,” Proceedings of the Fifth Society for Experimental Mechanics Annual Conference and Exposition, Portland, OR, June 2006, 9 pages.
  • G. Urgessa and A. Maji
    “Blast Test and Analysis of Carbon-fiber Reinforced Masonry Walls,” Proceedings of the Twenty-third Southeastern Conference on Theoretical and Applied Mechanics, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, May 2006, 8 pages.
  • G. Urgessa, A. Maji and J. Brown
    “Analysis and Testing of Blast Effects on Walls Strengthened with GFRP and Shotcrete,” Proceedings of the Fiftieth International Society for the Advancement of Materials and Process Engineering Symposium and Exhibition, Long Beach, CA, May 2005, pp. 1135-1144.