Julius Adams Stratton


Julius Adams Stratton (May 18, 1901 – June 22, 1994)[1] was a U.S. electrical engineer and university administrator. He attended the University of Washington for one year, where he was admitted to the Zeta Psi fraternity, then transferred to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), from which he graduated with a bachelor's degree in 1923 and a master's degree in electrical engineering (EE) in 1926. He then followed graduate studies in Europe and the Technische Hochschule of Zürich (ETH Zurich), Switzerland, awarded him the degree of Doctor of Science in 1927.[2]

Julius Adams Stratton
Julius Adams Stratton.jpg
11th President of Massachusetts Institute of Technology
In office
Preceded byJames Rhyne Killian
Succeeded byHoward Wesley Johnson
1st Chancellor of Massachusetts Institute of Technology
In office
PresidentJames Rhyne Killian
Succeeded byPaul E. Gray
Personal details
Born(1901-05-18)May 18, 1901
Seattle, Washington
DiedJune 22, 1994(1994-06-22) (aged 93)
Boston, Massachusetts
Residence(s)United States
Alma mater
AwardsIEEE Medal of Honor (1957)
Faraday Medal (1961)
Scientific career
FieldsElectrical engineering
InstitutionsMassachusetts Institute of Technology
ThesisStreuungskoeffizient von Wasserstoff nach der Wellenmechanik (1927)
Doctoral advisorPaul Scherrer

Professional biographyEdit

He published the classic book "Electromagnetic Theory" as part of the McGraw-Hill series in Pure and Applied Physics in 1941. It has been re-issued by the IEEE.

He served as the president of MIT between 1959 and 1966, after serving the university in several lesser posts, notably appointments to provost in 1949, vice president in 1951, and chancellor in 1956.

In the 1955–1965 he served as member of Board of Trustees, RAND Corporation.[3] He also served as the chairman of the Ford Foundation between 1964 and 1971.

In 1967, Stratton was seconded to chair a Congressionally established "Commission on Marine Sciences, Engineering and Resources" whose work culminated in a report, "Our Nation and the Sea", published in 1969, that had a major influence on ocean sciences and management in the United States and abroad. The commission itself became commonly referred to as the Stratton Commission.

Stratton was also a founding member of the National Academy of Engineering.[4]

Stratton collected his speeches in a 1966 book titled Science and the Educated Man: Selected Speeches of Julius A. Stratton (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1966), with a foreword by the historian of technology Elting E. Morison who had been on the faculty of MIT as a professor of humanities in the Sloan School of Industrial Management from 1946 to 1966.[5]

MIT's Julius Adams Stratton Student Center at 84 Massachusetts Avenue is named in his honor.


  1. ^ "President Emeritus Julius Adams Stratton dies at 93".
  2. ^ Stratton, Julius Adams (1928). Streuungskoeffizient von Wasserstoff nach der Wellenmechanik [Scattering coefficient of hydrogen after wave mechanics] (Ph.D.). Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich. OCLC 720868304 – via ProQuest.
  3. ^ "Stratton, Julius Adams, 1901-1994".
  4. ^ "Founding members of the National Academy of Engineering". National Academy of Engineering. Retrieved October 21, 2012.
  5. ^ Honan, William H., "Elting E. Morison, 85, Educator Who Wrote Military Biographies", The New York Times, April 26, 1995


  • Johnson, Howard W. (March 1996). "Julius Adams Stratton (18 May 1901-22 June 1994)". Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society. 140 (1): 116–121. JSTOR 987282.

External linksEdit

  • IEEE History Center- IEEE minibio of Julius Stratton
  • Full text of the final Stratton Commission report, "Our Nation and the Sea"
  • Julius Adams Stratton at the Mathematics Genealogy Project
Academic offices
New office Chancellor of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1956 – 1959
Title next held by
Paul E. Gray
Preceded by President of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology
1959 – 1966
Succeeded by