90 and still going strong
Alumnus Stanley Clemenz (BSEE 1942) has witnessed an impressive array of technological changes and advancement during his 90 years of life. In fact, his career placed him in the middle of several such advancements during his days prior to retirement.
Alumnus Stanley Clemenz (BSEE 1942)
Stan was born in the Buckeye state of Ohio – Cincinnati, to be exact – but he was quickly converted to a Hoosier as his family moved to Lawrenceville, Indiana when he was a young boy. While attending Sunman High School, Stan came across an advertisement in a magazine for Indiana Institute of Technology’s accelerated engineering program. This seemed interesting, so he wrote for more information. Soon, Stan was invited for a visit to the “campus” downtown which consisted of one building – an old mortuary. Tuition was only $50, and someone from Indiana Tech even helped him find a job that assisted him in paying for his college. This helped to “sell” Indiana Tech, so he enrolled. During his days at Tech, Stan lived in a portion of a private home for $1.50 per week in rent.
In those days, he was one of the rare few who took the path directly from high school to college. Most of his classmates served several years in the military before returning to earn their degree. The age and experience difference sometimes made it difficult, but the learning environment was very strong. Through much hard work and dedication, Stan graduated from Tech with a Bachelor of Science in electrical engineering in 1942. His education from Tech helped catapult him to great success in his career.
After graduation, Stan worked for P.R. Mallory Co. in Indianapolis. This is the company that brought forth the inventions of the TV tuner, the Bendix automatic washer sequence switch, the Duracell battery, and the 6-volt vibrator that made the automobile radio possible. Stan worked at P.R. Mallory for about a year before he was almost drafted; however, he received a commission in the U.S. Navy instead.
During his service in the Navy, Stan worked in the naval research laboratory, the underwater sound laboratory, MIT, the University of Arizona, the Bureau of Ships, and the Mare Island and Norfolk Naval Shipyards. One of the highlights included testing of the Atom Bomb at Bikini Atoll.
After the war, Stan went to work at the Atlantic Missile Range at Patrick Air Force Base in Florida where he enjoyed designing and testing missile systems for the US Navy and US Air Force. When NASA moved to Cape Canaveral in 1958 to begin the space program, Stan was fortunate to be transferred to NASA where he offered his expertise on the Mercury, Gemini, Apollo, Shuttle, and satellite programs. Later, NASA moved Stan to the manned spacecraft center in Houston, Texas where he worked in the mission control center. It was quite a thrill for Stan to be involved in the launching of these space vehicles.