LSU Alumnus Col. Christian Patterson: Army Commander of Engineering With Nature

April 18, 2023

Building Coastal Infrastructure for Communities and National Security

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is one of the world’s largest engineering, design and construction management agencies, working on stability and sustainability projects in more than 130 countries worldwide. The methods and tools that support these projects are researched and developed by the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center, or ERDC, whose commander is LSU Manship School of Mass Communication alumnus Col. Christian Patterson.

“I’m user-friendly,” said Col. Patterson. “I believe I’m in the position I am because of my ability to tell a story about what we do, who we are and what our value is to the nation.”

Every project ERDC engages in requires storytelling since the Army Corps of Engineers couldn’t dredge a canal, build a wall, design a dam or construct a flood protection levee without coordination and communication with multiple partners.

“If we did not communicate, we couldn’t get anything done,” Patterson said. “I also learned a lot about leadership at LSU. I learned from my professors, but also from my instructors in Army ROTC and from being around the football coaches—seeing the ways they led the football players. I’ve been extremely blessed in that I’ve always been around strong, talented and passionate people who care about others and the world.”

While majoring in mass communication at LSU, Patterson also worked as a videographer for the Fighting Tigers football team.

Col. Christian Patterson

LSU Manship alumnus Col. Christian Patterson.

– LSU / Isabella Mire

“In everything you do, do the absolute very best that you can, and to the highest standard possible. That’s something I learned at LSU.”

Col. Christian Patterson, commander of the U.S. Army Engineer Research and Development Center and LSU Manship School of Mass Communication alumnus