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AEG chapter grows industry connections

Adam Luepke leads a recent meeting of UW-Madison's Association of Engineering Geologists student chapter.

UW-Madison’s student chapter of the Association of Environmental and Engineering Geologists has grown rapidly in the past few years.

“When I was a freshman, we had only five or six members,” says co-president Adam Luepke, currently a senior majoring in geological engineering. “Now we have about 40.”

Luepke admits that free food might initially lure some students to the AEG chapter’s biweekly meetings. But they stay involved because AEG helps them decide how to use their engineering education and how to make the most of it in their future careers.

The chapter brings in guest speakers who share all manner of engineering experience, from managing multi-billion dollar project for Shell Oil to repairing a failing dam in Montana.

“We try to give it a broader scope so that people can figure out what they’re interested in, and what they’re not interested in,” Luepke says.

The speakers, as well as the chapter’s advising sessions, give undergraduates the knowledge and confidence they need to succeed in the professional world.

“All of a sudden, you know how to talk to a professional—it’s almost like mock-interviewing,” Luepke says. “A lot of people have landed internships through our club.”

Support from the College of Engineering, and from industry sponsors like BP, helps the AEG chapter put on and promote its bi-weekly events, as well as trips to such destinations as the Fermilab outside Chicago. 

“Those resources go a long way toward making connections and building careers,” Luepke says.

Scott Gordon
12/6/2013