Kenneth R. Wadleigh '43
A memorial service will be held Sunday, Oct. 2 at 2 p.m. at the Friends' Meeting House, 5 Longfellow Pl., Cambridge.
Wadleigh served as a senior administrator at the Institute for more than 20 years. His contributions ranged from major expansion of the student residential system to development of the MIT Health Plan, a health maintenance organization that currently serves more than 8,000 members of the MIT community and their families.
As dean for student affairs from 1961 to 1969, Wadleigh helped establish the faculty resident program through which senior faculty members and their families live in undergraduate dormitories as house masters. This program works to enhance residential life as part of the overall educational experience. Wadleigh also oversaw the expansion of student extracurricular activities brought on by construction of what is today's Student Center.
After being named vice president in 1969, Wadleigh focused on carrying out special projects, including further development of the student residential system. In 1970, his responsibilities were expanded to include the Registrar's Office, repository of the Institute's permanent records, and the Medical Department. In 1975 he became dean of the Graduate School as well.
Born in Passiac, NJ, in 1921, Wadleigh received SB and SM degrees in mechanical engineering from MIT in 1943. After serving in the U.S. Navy during World War II, he returned to the Institute as an instructor and was appointed assistant professor in 1949. In 1953 he received his ScD degree and the first Goodwin Medal honoring "conspicuously effective teaching" at MIT.
Wadleigh was known as a specialist in applied fluid dynamics and thermodynamics. He served as a visiting lecturer at Cambridge University in 1953-54. He returned to MIT as associate professor in 1954, was named professor in 1961, and retired in 1984. In his retirement, he had been active on several town boards in Swansea and was enjoying sailing.
Wadleigh is survived by his wife, Jeanne Stockbarger Wadleigh of Swansea; a daughter, Karen Wadleigh of Wilbraham, and two granddaughters.
Remembrances may be sent to MIT's Independent Residence Development Fund, c/o Treasurer's Office, 238 Main St., Suite 200, Cambridge 02142 or to the WGBH Educational Foundation, 125 Western Ave., Boston 02134.