ASCE Honors UC Chapter with Certificate of Commendation

By:    Brandon Pytel
Date: April 16, 2018

UC’s student chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers receives the Certificate of Commendation, a national award that recognizes the top five percent of student chapters in the country.

ASCE students gather next to canoe.

ASCE students at UC pose with their concrete canoe team, which placed third overall this year at the Ohio Valley Student Conference in Athens, Ohio.

With over 600 student organizations on campus, students at the University of Cincinnati (UC) always have something to do. Many students interested in the construction industry and civil engineering field, whether that be through networking or participating in national and regional competitions, join UC’s American Society of Civil Engineering (ASCE) student chapter.

Earlier this month, UC’s chapter of ASCE received the prestigious Certificate of Commendation, an annual award that honors no more than five percent of student chapters in the country. This year only 17 of over 350 chapters internationally received the honor.

Says Sheamus Togher, president of UC’s ASCE student chapter and senior in the College of Engineering and Applied Science’s (CEAS) civil engineering program, “It’s great to get recognition for all the hard work students have put in.”

Each year ASCE reviews each student chapter’s annual report before determining the commendations. This report includes statistics on membership, recruitment, events and speakers.

UC’s chapter, once in the bottom third of ASCE student chapters, has turned itself around in the last several years due in part to the leadership team.

Togher and the rest of the executive board have increased membership by diversifying their activities. They host a number of construction tours both on- and off-campus, invest time into community outreach projects and help plan campus-wide events.

Earlier this year they collaborated with the Construction Student Association and the Cincinnati Zoo to design a xylophone for elephants. They also hosted a fundraiser, selling t-shirts to raise money for hurricane relief in Texas and Puerto Rico.  

Togher sees the UC chapter of ASCE as more than just another organization; he sees it as jumping off point for many students in the field. ASCE provides first-year students the opportunity to learn more about the field and its many different branches. As students develop and gain experience, they learn more about technical aspects of the field through ASCE-sponsored talks by industry leaders.

For Togher, who has accepted a full-time position with Hazen and Sawyer in Sharonville, Ohio, ASCE has been a great platform for networking, building comradery with classmates and gaining leadership experience.

As Togher and other executive members graduate this spring, they’ll leave behind a great resource and organization for CEAS students.