William H. McLean Papers, 1927-2003


William Henry McLean was born in New York City on April 15, 1911. He attended the Collegiate School of New York City and went on to study at Stevens Institute of Technology graduating in 1931 with a Bachelors of Science in Mechanical Engineering. From Harvard University, he received a Masters of Science in 1933, Masters in Business Administration in 1934, and Doctor of Commercial Science in 1938. Throughout his education and for a short time after graduation, he taught at both Harvard University and Stevens Institute of Technology. From 1949-1954, he was joined the army and in the Research and Development program of the Office of the Quartermaster General.

After the war, Dr. McLean began a successful professional career holding executive positions at the Eastern Provinces Administration Ltd., McKeesport Tin Plate Corporation, National Can Company, Dewey & Almy Chemical Company and Merck & Co., Inc. He also held the position of Trustee of Union College and Overlook Hospital. In 1964 McLean left the corporate sector and returned to Stevens Institute of Technology holding the positions Assistant to the President, Dean of the College, acting President and Trustee.

Throughout his career, Dr. McLean was a champion for education. He was a member of the New Jersey State Board of Higher Education and the author of the state’s first tuition aid grant program which provided financial assistance to students attending independent colleges. He was a founder and president of the Association of Independent Colleges. He established a fund in 1987 at the Collegiate School to support the annual William H. McLean Visiting Scholar Program in Mathematics and Science in which a scholar or expert from the field of math and science speaks to the Collegiate School.

In 1995, the McLean Chemical Sciences Building on the Stevens campus was named in his honor.


  • These materials were donated to Stevens Institute of Technology by Vesta Tittmann McLean in 2010.