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Michelle Craig 619

SJSU Student Night - Chapter Meeting Wrap-Up

Panel Discussion: Transitioning from Student to Professional

The Chapter held its annual Student Night for San Jose State University engineering students on March 7th in Milpitas.  Dave & Buster's welcomed sixty-two people (17 industry members, 4 guest speakers, and 41 students) for an evening filled with networking, a panel discussion ficused on providing students with insights into managing their career paths, including being open to opportunities not necessarily on their radar while in school.

The Social Hour kicked off the evening to encourage students and employers to introduce themselves.  Dinner included barbequed brisket, barbequed chicken, Southern Cobb salad, Cowboy baked beans, baked mac and cheese, and cornbread.

President Ash Wear welcomed the SJSU students, and introduced Dr. Akthem Al-Manaseer, Professor of Engineering and the students' mentor.  The noteworthy panel this year included Dina El-Tawansy, PE, PMP, Caltrans District 4 Director; Dave Sykes, P.E., Executive Coach with Baker Tilly (he was formerly City Manager of San Jose); and Greg Thiebaut, P.E., Project Manager/Associate Vice Prsident with HNTB Corporation.  Both Mr. Sykes and Mr. Thiebaut are graduates of SJSU's engineering program.  Stepping in for Program Chair, Jaymi Fridley, SJSU's Professor and Department Chair, Geotechnical Engineering, Laura Sullivan-Green, acted as the moderator for the evening.

Each of the distinguished panel members introduced themselves and provided some brief career highlights, along with some anecdotes of their journey to passing the PE exam.  Other notable topics included memorable projects during their employment, the satisfaction derived from knowing they are impacting the community they live in, creating a work-life balance, integrating social equity in their projects, helping small and disabled businesses grow to become competitive on civic projects, and the sense of pride derived from designing and/or building a safe structure.

The Chapter would like to acknowledge Chapter Student Activites Co-Chair Dr. Akthem Al-Manaseer for his assistance in coordinating this annual event, and thank everyone who was in attendance.  Overall, the evening was a huge success, and we hope the players enjoyed wrapping up their evening on the Midway!


SJSU attendees and faculty, panel participants, and Chapter Officers gather for the traditional group photo.

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