S. Sonny Kim, Ph.D, P.E., F.ASCE

Distinguished Faculty Fellow | College of Engineering
Professor and Graduate Director | Civil and Environmental Engineering
Ph.D., Texas A&M University, College Station, TX, 2004
Email: kims@uga.edu

Research Interests

  • Use of Nondestructive Testing, Remote Sensing, and Machine Learning for Resilient/Sustainable Infrastructure Health Monitoring
  • Climate Resilient Infrastructure | Saltmarsh Restoration
  • Transportation Geotechnics | Mechanistic-Empirical Pavement Design


  • President’s Award – Korean Geotechnical Society – 2023
  • Georgia Engineer of the Year – Georgia Society of Professional Engineers (GSPE) – 2021
  • Civil Engineer of the Year – American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Georgia Section – 2020/2021
  • Distinguished Faculty Fellow Award, College of Engineering, University of Georgia – 2019
  • Appreciation Plaque, Egyptian Housing and Building National Research Center – 2018 & 2019
  • UGA PSO Fellowship Award, Public Service and Outreach, University of Georgia – 2018
  • Fellow, Geosynthetics Institute (GSI) – 2018
  • Fellow, American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) – 2017
  • Outstanding Faculty Award, KSU Foundation, Inc – 2015

Service to Professional Society

  • Voting Member, International Society for Soil Mechanics and Geotechnical Engineering (ISSMGE) TC202 Transportation Geotechnics
  • Board of Director, Falling Weight Deflectometer User Group (FWDUG)
  • Academic Representative, FHWA’s Asphalt Pavements and Materials Technical Feedback Group (APM-TFG)
  • Treasurer, ASCE EMI Pavement Committee
  • Member, ASCE Geo-Institute Pavement Committee
  • Member, ASCE T&DI Highway Pavement Committee
  • Member, TRB AKM 80 Aggregates
  • Member, TRB AKP 20 Design and Rehabilitation of Concrete Pavements
  • Editorial Board, MDPI Journal of Infrastructures
  • Editorial Board, Innovative Infrastructure Solutions
  • Associate Editor, KSCE Journal of Civil Engineering

Courses Taught

  • CVLE 8410 Inelastic Behavior of Construction Materials
  • CVLE 8420 Geomechanics
  • CVLE 8460 Soil Improvement
  • CVLE 8470 Advanced Pavement System Design
  • CVLE 3420 Introduction to Soil Mechanics
  • CVLE 3450 Civil Engineering Lab – Soils
  • CVLE 4450 Geotechnical Structures
  • CVLE 4470/6470 Pavement Design

Ph.D Students

Ahmad Abdelmawla
Graduate Research Assistant
M.S. Cairo University, Egypt
B.S. Cairo University, Egypt
Research Topic: Use of GPR for Resilient Infrastructure Health Monitoring with Image Analysis and Machine Learning Algorithm

Steve Pahno
Graduate Research Assistant
M.S. Georgia State University
B.S. Georgia Institute of Technology
Research Topic: Development of a performance-based specification for subgrade soil embankment

Mahyar Shahri
Graduate Research Assistant
M.S. University of Tehran
Research Topic: Satellite and Remote Sensing Application for Sustainable Infrastructures 

M.S/Double Dawgs

Julian Hwang
B.S. Environmental Engineering
University of Florida 2022

Zack Hall
B.S. Civil Engineering
University of Georgia 2023

Donovan Jackson
B.S. Civil Engineering
Savannah State University 2022

Former Students

Ryan Romeo, Ph.D., 2022
Seyedehnarges Tahaei Yaghoubi, Ph.D., 2022
Jacob Townsend, M.S., 2022
Whitney DeMoore, M.S., 2022
Iman Salehikouei, Ph.D., 2020
Chandler Banks, M.S., 2020
Hampton Mark Worthey, M.S., 2020
Katelyn House, M.S., 2019
Jason Wright, M.S., 2018
Steven Williams, M.S., 2018
R. Austin Etheridge, M.S., 2018

Advisory Committee

Brianne Kathleen Dier, M.S. 2023
Lacy Camille Noerenberg, M.S., 2023
Gang Su, M.S. 2022
Ananta Sinha, Ph.D., 2022
Shihan Ma, Ph.D.
Yongcan Huang, Ph.D.
Atanta Shinha, Ph.D.
Brian Oyegbile, Ph.D., 2020
Hiwa Hamid, Ph.D., 2019
Sangameshwar Somashekar Hanumasagar, Ph.D., 2019
Amin Yaghoobi, Ph.D., 2017
Clint Morris, MS, 2021
Will Shirley, MS, 2021
Noah Chapman, MS, 2021
Chnar Solae, MS, 2019
Caroline Dickey, MS, 2019
Steven Tate, MS, 2019
Davis Wing, MS, 2019
Adara Dodson, MS, 2019
Tofail Ahmed, MS, 2018
Grace Darling, MS, 2018
Victor Lopez, MS, 2018
Lauren Shannon, MS, 2018
Nazik Citir, MS, 2017
Katelyn Stallings, MS, 2017
Matthew Sullivan, MS, 2018
Catherine Johnson, MS, 2016