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NGSEA wins Graduate Student Chapter of the Year

The Northeastern Graduate Structural Engineering Association (NGSEA) was selected by the Structural Engineering Institute (SEI) Local Activities Division as the Graduate Student Chapter of the Year. NGSEA, which is the SEI Graduate Student Chapter at Northeastern, was chosen for their “excellent mix of technical and social activities” that engage students and “help them transition into the workforce.”

The growth of NGSEA into a nationally-recognized chapter has been years in the making and represents a collective effort from many of the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering structural engineering graduate students. Starting in 2018, then president Viet Le worked with vice-president Andrew Summerfield to increase and expand the number and type of events held by the group.

“We regularly hold student research seminars and documentary nights to get to know each other both professionally and socially,” said Summerfield, current president.  “The documentary nights have been a great way for us to view important documentaries together related to our profession and to engage through group discussion with some of the social, economic, and political issues that we face as technical professionals. We also try to have one guest speaker per semester, to be sure we are engaged with the engineering community outside the university, and one group outing, like an architectural walking tour that we did in the Fall 2019 semester.”

“[Current vice-president] Nick Briggs and I are thrilled that SEI has chosen the Northeastern SEI Chapter for Graduate Student Chapter of the Year!” said Summerfield. “We also owe a lot to our supportive faculty members, especially Mehrdad Sasani, Andy Myers, and Jerry Hajjar. It really has been a pleasure working with SEI to cultivate a strong structural engineering community here at Northeastern.” Professor Sasani serves as the current NGSEA faculty advisor.

“In 2018, when Viet, Andrew, and I discussed having student research seminars to further cultivate technical and professional excellence, Andrew proposed including documentary nights as well, in part to remind everybody of the importance and recognition of social and economic aspects, responsibilities, and impact of our professional activities,” said Sasani.

SEI is a group of over 30,000 structural engineers within the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). The award will be conferred at the SEI’s 2020 Structures Congress, the premier event for structural engineers, to take place this April in St. Louis, MO.

Related Faculty: Mehrdad Sasani, Jerome F. Hajjar, Andrew T. Myers

Related Departments:Civil & Environmental Engineering