College recognizes inclusive excellence in engineering

Annual event celebrates student achievement and diversity

The University of Cincinnati College of Engineering and Applied Science celebrated the people, partnerships and programs that champion equity and inclusion initiatives at the annual year-end celebration event hosted by the college’s Office of Inclusive Excellence and Community Engagement.

The event highlights student achievement, staff and faculty contributions, community advocacy, and the importance of the opportunities and pathways created by the office and its allies to foster the development and success of the diverse students in the college.

Pete Strange, UC alumnus (civil engineering, ‘72) and former CEO and Chairman Emeritus of Messer Construction, delivered the keynote speech. 

Strange suggested people in positions of leadership move from speeches about diversity and inclusion to action. He called on UC student leaders to exercise their right to expect action from their leaders, teachers and employers; to have real expectations for individuals and organizations to act on stated goals and values; and to measure them by their actions.

“We need your courage and leadership. We need for you to make your voices heard to bring us to a higher level of thinking and action. With your help, we can create a vibrant community where every citizen has both the opportunity and the motivation to create value,” Strange said.

The future of every industry lies in the next generation of talent, Strange said. The key to unlocking that talent is diversity and inclusion, creating teams and workplaces that not only bring people, talent and ideas to the table but also value their collective, transformational power.

“Your energy, insight and ideas will help us take action against the challenges of our businesses, our communities and our world. Your command of the tools for communication and innovation will help us move at the speed of change and opportunity that the future demands,” Strange said.

The event also included presentation of awards to outstanding students, faculty and staff, recognition of the Choose Ohio First and LSAMP Scholars, and a celebration of the 2020-2021 graduating seniors. 

“We commend our students for their dedication to the community, and we are honored to be a part of your journey,” said UC Women in Engineering Program Coordinator Krizia Cabrera-Toro.

The ceremony also recognized Woolpert, Inc., a valued industry partner and sponsor. Woolpert has been working with the office and the UC Foundation Development team since July 2020 to explore ways their corporation could support and be involved with the Women of Color Summer Engineering Camp. In 2021, Woolpert established the Woolpert Excellence Fund to support scholarships for women of color engineering students and to support the 2021 Women of Color Summer Engineering Camp.

In addition to financial support for the camp, Woolpert engineers are excited to get involved, demonstrate their use of drone technology, share their academic and career experiences and participate in hands-on science activities with camp students.  

2021 Awards and Recipients:

  • Outstanding First-Year Student: Temple Corbett
  • Outstanding Sophomore Student: Kevin Edmonds
  • Outstanding Pre-Junior Student: Ashley Kirby
  • Outstanding Junior Student: Priya Modgil
  • Senior Speaker: Moriah Henry
  • Outstanding Staff Member: Diana Riggs
  • Outstanding Faculty Member: Brittany Arthur
  • Industry Award: Woolpert

All CEAS faculty, staff, students, UC affiliates, and industry partners were invited to the event.

Featured image at top: Star lights hanging from celiling of ballroom. Photo/Canva.