The engineering students at Virginia Tech were chosen as the most philanthropic in the country for 2012 as well as operating the nation's best Student Engineers' Council, according to the results of the recent annual competition hosted by the National Association of Engineering Student Councils (NAESC) at Purdue University.
Among the various accolades, Virginia Tech Student Engineers' Council was cited for its allocation of over $100,000 to the University's College of Engineering in the past year, as well as more than $1 million in the past ten years. This money was used for various engineering projects including: partially funding more than 30 engineering organizations such as the internationally award winning hybrid electric vehicle team; the outdoor-terrain motorsport team; and the Baja and Formula Society of Automotive Engineers' teams.
To fund these and other programs, the Student Engineers' Council sponsors and organizes one of the largest career fairs in the nation, attracting some 250 companies each year to the campus to recruit its engineering students. Each company pays a fee to attend the job fair, based on sponsorship level and overall participation.
With the revenue generated by the career fair, the executive group of the Student Engineers' Council makes requests for proposals from both engineering faculty and students on how to best spend the proceeds, while still making sure a portion is placed within one of the endowments held by the Virginia Tech Foundation.
"The students who contribute their time and energy to the Virginia Tech Student Engineers' Council, especially the executive team, are indeed the leaders of tomorrow. They already represent the best and the brightest of our engineering students in the country, and their leadership and management skills are second to none," said Lynn Nystrom, faculty adviser to the student group for more than 30 years.
"The students who make up our council dedicate most of their free time to the Student Engineers' Council because we all believe that what we are doing is making an incredible impact on so many people. Our devotion to the council is outstanding and never takes a break," said Jeremy Codiroli of Chesterfield, Va., the 2011-12 chair of the council, and an industrial and systems engineering major.
Among the activities the members of the council have also conducted are: the underwriting of community service projects; planning of an outreach program to collect school supplies for low-income kindergarten through 12th grade students; organization of a campus-wide Engineers' Week celebration; development of an annual Leadership in Engineering conference; distribution of schedule planners to freshmen to help with their campus orientation; and the awarding of three annual scholarships, also from endowed accounts.
In addition to Codiroli, the other executive members of the council are: Allan Kirchoff, mechanical engineering, vice chair, of Richmond, Va.; Kevin Peterson, mechanical engineering, director of finance, of Clifton Forge, Va.; Ben Clark, mechanical engineering, director of administration, of Woodbury, Ct.; Ashley Taylor, mechanical engineering, director of relations, of Fort Chiswell,Va.; Wes Matson, ocean engineering, director of philanthropy, of Brentwood, Tenn.; Ben Drew, mechanical engineering, engineering exposition chair, of Hudson, Ohio; John Lohr, mechanical engineering, past engineering exposition chair, of Glen Allen, Va.; Matthew Donaldson, mechanical engineering, leadership in engineering conference chair, of Keller, Texas; Dustin Moore, computer science, information management chair, of Centreville, Va.; Alexander Dunlevy, mechanical engineering, engineers week chair, of Marlton, Va.; Ross Cooper, industrial and systems engineering, awards and scholarship chair, of Midlothian, Va.; Alek Leckszas, construction engineering and management, publicity chair, of Richmond, Va.; Paul Asbury, mechanical engineering, membership enrichment chair, of Bedford, Va.; Ben Codiroli, industrial and systems engineering, freshman chair, of Chesterfield, Va.; Brian Keller, mechanical engineering, undergraduate advisory member, of Charleston, W.Va.; and Dan Morton, electrical and computer engineering, undergraduate advisory board
member, of North Huntingdon, Pa.