Beginning with National Engineers Week 2012, we are featuring members of our Nebraska Engineering community who make a positive difference in the world. For our first year in the Big Ten, we've added profiles of the UNL College of Engineering's B1G potential, B1G ideas and B1G impact to our college's National E-Week web area. We're proud of our STUDENTS, ALUMNI and FACULTY who use their engineering skills for the greater good. Let's keep it growing! If you're a Nebraska Engineering community member who should be included here, we welcome your stories.
- IST&E-Week, UNL College of Engineering programs at Omaha (Feb. 19-25, 2012)
- E-Week in Lincoln (April 8-13, 2012)
Quentin Dudley is pursuing a master's degree in Agricultural and Biological Systems Engineering at UNL. His research deals with life cycle analysis in energy and agriculture. While earning his bachelor’s degree at UNL, Dudley was named a Chancellor's Scholar, the university’s highest undergraduate academic honor, for maintaining a 4.0 grade-point average on all collegiate work. He says he enjoys engineering because it offers opportunities to be “learning something new about the world every day.”
Jordan Burchatz, a student in UNL’s Department of Mechanical and Materials Engineering, works with Lefler Middle School students in Lincoln. The college has “adopted” the school’s math classes and offers tutoring and other incentives to help the younger students learn and enjoy math. “It seems natural to tutor and I try to use what worked for me to find what connects them to the idea or problem,” he adds.
Ashley Schmidt pursues a major in Biological Systems Engineering and a minor in Energy Sciences. After traveling to Mali, she formed a non-governmental organization, World Energy Project, with her fellow students and friends. “We’re all very passionate about using our education to help” in places of need, says Schmidt. WEP projects include installing solar panels to generate a reliable power supply for the hospital in Koutiala, Mali and much more.
Scott Sorensen, a graduate student in Civil Engineering, helps with a middle school outreach program: Roads, Rails and Racecars. “It’s my favorite part of the week,” says Sorensen. “It’s fun to introduce a concept in a short period of time and get (the students) excited about engineering.” Sorensen is learning, too—for his first time designing a lesson, he taught about erosion with milk as the liquid wearing down pudding as soil. And yes, the students really "ate up" that learning.
Caitlin Brow (far right), is making a difference in conserving energy. As an Architectural Engineering student working on the I-SAVE team with UNL’s Durham School, she says their project is designed to "wirelessly monitor every point where energy is consumed in your house … (to) show you the energy impact and how you could reduce energy waste with a panel board to centrally control energy use."
Walter Bircher, who majors in Mechanical & Materials Engineering at UNL, studied for a summer in Bursa, Turkey, on a Critical Language Scholarship. The program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, extends global awareness.