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WAMI Forum

Electrical engineering students and alumni listen to USF electrical enginering professor Larry Dunleavy speak at the WAMI Student Forum. 

Sponsors Help Bring In-Person Events Back To The College Of Engineering

For the first time since the beginning of the pandemic, the USF College of Engineering is hosting large events again thanks to the generosity from community and industry sponsors. In 2021, the college's development team raised an impressive $130,000 for three important engineering-related events that help the college establish connections between students, faculty, and industry. These three events include the following: WAMI Student Forum, NAESC Southeast Regional Conference, and the CUTR Transportation Achievement Awards.
The Center for Wireless and Microwave Information Systems (WAMI) Student Forum is a student-led and student-focused academic forum that presents research, trends, and advice for careers within the wireless and RF engineering field. Thanks to generous donations from industry sponsors, the latest forum was held October 29 to a large crowd that included over 160 electrical engineering alumni, faculty, current students, and industry insiders, 130 of which were students. 
Electrical engineering professor and WAMI Center Co-Director Larry Dunleavy said that the forum provides opportunities for participating students and industry partners alike.

“Our goal for this event is twofold – first to inform students about the many exciting career paths and opportunities in the field of wireless and microwave engineering and second to excite our industry partners and sponsors about the quality and enthusiasm of USF WAMI students and encourage them to sponsor our future forums and WAMI Center activities,” Dunleavy said.
Electrical engineering professor and WAMI Center Co-Director Dr. Jing Wang also said that the forum is a good way for students and industry partners to connect.

“The WAMI Student Forum is an excellent opportunity for students and members to connect with local industries to learn about what they have to offer for them in next-era careers focused on wireless communications," Wang said. "Our latest forum gave students the chance to attend panel sessions with professionals, present poster topics, and mingle at the reception. We couldn’t have done this without the generous donations of industry sponsors and the fund-raising efforts of the college's development department.”

NAESC Conference

Engineering students from across the country pose for a group shot at the NAESC Conference. 

A second event that brought opportunities to USF engineering students was the National Association of Engineering Student Councils (NAESC) Southeast Regional Conference. The NAESC works to facilitate communication among member councils, promotes engineering education, and serves as a collective voice for engineering student councils.
Curtis Gaskins, NAESC’s Liaison Chair, discussed the importance of their event and how the college's development team helped make it possible.

“USF engineering has long awaited a Southeast Regional Conference on campus since we joined National Association of Engineering Student Councils (NAESC) in 2019," Gaskins said. "The biggest hurdles for any event are sponsorships. The USF engineering development team went above and beyond in the financial facet of the conference. The sponsorships collected by the development team allowed for the USF Engineering Student Council to have the first in-person conference in NAESC since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic."

He said that students at the conference heard lectures from Bethune Cookman’s Environmental Science program, USF's Ruthmae Sears about J.E.D.I (Justice, Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion), and USF College of Engineering Dean Bishop about his recent satellite research.
"We were able to network with 11 companies from the Tampa Bay Area, reconnect as a region of NAESC, and we were most importantly able to meet and convene on how to empower our engineering peers from our respective schools,” Gaskins said.

Transportation Achievement Awards

CUTR Associate Director Lisa Staes and CUTR Director Fred Mannering present the Florida Transportation Hall of Fame award to Sylvan 'Sonny' Holtzman. 

The Center for Urban Transportation Research (CUTR) also held a large in-person event at the Transportation Achievement Awards after last year’s decision to go virtual due to the pandemic. The Transportation Achievement Awards is CUTR’s signature annual event that includes a reception, dinner, and presentation of numerous transportation awards to students and industry professionals.
CUTR’s Associate Director Lisa Staes discussed how the funds raised through sponsorships positively impacts students and creates connections between CUTR and transportation leaders.

“We are honored to host the Transportation Achievement Awards to support student success in the field of transportation," Staes said. "The funds raised from this event directly impact students' academic achievement and participation. The USF engineering development team connected us with companies that share our vision for the next generation of transportation leaders. We are extremely grateful to both Maddy Richard and Tim Murphy for their continued support of this event.”
USF College of Engineering Assistant Director of Development Maddy Richard said that sponsors displayed a great amount of generosity in welcoming back in-person events.

“It’s incredible to see our community and industry partners’ excitement about coming back to campus," Richard said. "They not only supported our great events this fall, but they're helping to strengthen and grow our academic and research programs."

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