William Lupton (Finding Aid)

William Lupton

1941 -

Favorite Color: Blue

Favorite Food: Hoagies

Favorite Time of Year: Spring

Favorite Vacation Spot: Curacao Island

Interview Length: 179 minutes

Interview Date(s): July 13, 2010

Interview Location(s): Morgan State University, Baltimore, Maryland


William Lupton slates the interview and lists his favorites. He talks about his maternal grandparents, Annie Golden Thomas and William James Thomas, and mentions briefly his paternal grandmother, Carrie Mann. He recalls how his maternal grandfather worked in the Philadelphia Gas Company and his maternal grandmother worked for a doctor's family in New Jersey. He shares memories of his grandfather's youth, and then describes the family background of his mother, Mary Katherine Thomas Lupton, who grew up in a big family in Virginia. Lupton recalls that his father, Clement Merrill Lupton, Sr., worked as an auto mechanic in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Lupton relates memories of his childhood, including mischief with his cousin, Arthur Thomas, fixing the family's broken stereo, and arguing with his father about horse-racing. Lupton closes the first tape by discussing his family's history with the United States Navy.

William Lupton begins this interview tape describing his earliest memories of growing up and attending Gen. George G. Meade Elementary School, Robert Vaux Jr. High School, and Central High School, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He lists some of his classmates, including Rev. Jeremiah Wright and Bill Cosby. After briefly touching upon how his parents met, Lupton then remembers some of his elementary school experiences, particularly buying mustard pretzels from a vendor he called Mustard Pretzel Joe. Lupton then details the sights, sounds and smells of his neighborhood in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and he recalls an emergency visit to the doctor. Lupton describes himself as a critical thinker, and the emphasis placed on education in his household.

William Lupton first discusses his college aspirations during his high school years, when he would wear a sweatshirt that read "Lupton University." Before discussing his entrance to the United States Navy, Lupton describes his extracurricular interests and the role of religion in his life. Lupton then describes how he sought out an education through his service in the United States Navy aboard the USS Forrestal after realizing that he would prefer to fly planes rather than work five levels below sea-level amongst the ship's artillery. He remembers first earning two years worth of credits through a correspondence college program, then attending school at the Naval Station Great Lakes in North Chicago, Illinois. He outlines his career path, touching upon his service during the Vietnam War as a pilot, and subsequently receiving his graduate education in computer science at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterrey, California.

William Lupton discusses his involvement in the Vietnam War as a pilot in the United States Navy. He shares a lengthy story about an incident landing at Da Nang, Vietnam. Continuing in the progression of his life story, Lupton then recounts his education at the Naval Postgraduate School in Monterrey, California. He talks about his experiences at the United States Naval Academy, where he constructed and later became chairman of the academy's computer science department. Lupton describes another landing mishap aboard the USS Nimitz, following his departure from the United States Naval Academy in 1984.

William Lupton starts this interview describing what happened to his aircraft aboard the USS Nimitz. He then details his role as Professor of Naval Sciences and commanding officer of the Navy ROTC at Louisiana State University and Southern University and A&M College in Louisiana. He subsequently describes his tenure at Jackson State University, where he recreated the school's computer science department, and he touches upon how he was able to earn his Ph.D. degree during this time period. Lupton then discusses his role at Morgan State University in Baltimore, Maryland, beginning in 1991. Lupton recalls how he developed the computer science department in the school, and the difficulty in balancing his roles as researcher and department chair. He describes the National Technical Association, an organization of which he served as president from 2004 to 2006, and closes the interview by discussing his interest in computer science as a growing field.

Lupton first discusses some topics relevant to modern computer science, including parallel computing, Moore's Law and quantum computing. He then discusses the struggles of acquiring government funding, and how the amount of funding for government agencies has diminished in the early part of the twenty-first century. After describing the faculty in the Department of Computer Science at Morgan State University, Lupton then stresses the importance of service in academia and reflects on the changing academic atmosphere and objectives of the university. Lupton then reflects on the aspects of his career that he has enjoyed. He shares the successes of his three sons, offers some advice for a student interested in pursuing a career in science and considers his legacy.

61 Stories (See Ordered Story Set)