The Best Instructor
I had joined UIUC for my graduate work in the fall of 1959. My dream was to work with Professor Peck, and I was happy that he accepted me without question. He was a human being of Godly qualities, in addition to being the best instructor.
I have adopted the sermon from one of his classes, which has been my guiding principle throughout my career: "One year's experience repeated over 30 years does not constitute 30 years' experience." He was very fond of our Case Histories Conferences, and we were lucky to have him present keynote lectures to all these conferences (1984-2004).
I like to describe Ralph in this way:
Soil mechanics and its laws lay hid in night;
God said, "Let Ralph be," and there was light.
Shamsher Prakash, Ph.D., F.ASCE
This letter is an excerpt from the Geo-Strata Feature on Professor Peck, Geo-Strata September/October 2008.