Category Archives: Engineering Ambassadors

Thank You Video Project

Allie Gabbard

Allie Gabbard,
Senior, Engineering Technology & Management

Athens, OH 27 April 2020

As you are aware things have really switched gears due to the novel coronavirus. Within a blink of an eye, life as a college student quickly changed. Announcements were released and within a week of spring break we transitioned online. Many events have been canceled or postponed until further notice.

As an ambassador, one of our favorite events to attend is the awards ceremony for the faculty and staff. Unfortunately, like many other events, this one has been postponed. Attention shifted to the students in attempt to give them the best education possible as well as give the graduating students a sense of normalcy.

Classes moved online, exams are wrapping up, and hundreds of students are about to graduate. This was only possible due to the drive and passion of the faculty and staff of the Russ College and Ohio University as a whole. In trying times like these it is vital to work as a team, and they did just that. We wanted to take a moment to recognize the people that made all of this possible.

Dr. Masel and I worked together to organize a video that included nearly all the
ambassadors. With enthusiasm and excitement, each member participated in a line in the script below and we all had the opportunity to say thank you to the ones that made everything possible.

I encourage you to read through the transcript below to understand how thankful we are for the faculty and staff as well as watch the video! We would love for you to continue to share the video as we are very thankful and want to give them the recognition they deserve. Thank you all for all of your hard work!


“It’s been a really unusual semester for everyone in the Russ College as faculty and students have worked together to make a huge transition. A lot of attention has been given to the students, but today we would like to give a shout out to all of the faculty and staff for their hard work and perseverance. We know it hasn’t been easy for anyone during this time. Students found out we wouldn’t be returning to class. You found out that you only had a few days to re-plan half of a semester. You all have made it work.

We would like to take some time to express our appreciation of all our faculty and staff. You have made a full commitment to ensure that we still get the higher education we set out to achieve. You all made a sudden transition to move to remote classes. We understand that being at home for you can be just as big of a challenge. Instead of talking in front of a class, you now talk into a camera. While attempting to pre-record lectures, we understand children and dogs may be running around in the background. Perhaps you have re-recorded a lecture 2 or 3 times because it didn’t sound right. As engineering professors, some of you have had even bigger challenges. How in the world am I going to give my students the hands-on lab assignment we do on a weekly basis?

Where there’s a will, there’s a way and you all proved that. Advising week approached and without hesitation advising sessions were held virtually so we could see each other and take a minute to catch up with our advisors. Our faculty and staff are the ingredients to the recipe of success the Russ College had when transitioning to the online classes. Despite the pandemic, you all are about to graduate hundreds of Russ College Undergrads. On behalf of the Engineering Ambassadors and the entire Russ College student body, THANK YOU!

Engineering Ambassador Google Hangout

Lydia Seiter

Lydia Seiter,
Senior, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Athens, OH 16 April 2020

As President of the Engineering Ambassadors, one of my responsibilities was to plan social activities for the organization. With the transition to virtual learning, many of our spring social events, like bowling at Rollerbowl, were unfortunately cancelled. I still wanted to foster that warm sense of community we feel when we spend time together, so I decided to plan a virtual hangout on Google Hangouts for this past Monday.

Google Hangout

At the Google Hangout, we had a great turnout of graduating ambassadors, returning ambassadors, and new ambassadors. Even though we were not able to be together in person, we were still thankful for the opportunity to get to know each other and welcome the new ambassadors to our amazing organization. We spoke about what we had been up to in quarantine, movies and TV series we were watching, how our summer plans were developing, and how online classes were going.

It was wonderful to be able to empathize about how the current situation was affecting us, and to lean on each other for support. I wish we could all see each other in person to say our final goodbyes, but I’m thankful for all the Ambassadors’ willingness to adapt to the uncertainty, whether it was by attending a virtual hangout rather than an in-person event, or holding meetings with prospective students online rather than in-person, or working to make videos and presentations of our lab facilities rather than in-person tours.

Breakfast with a Russ Prize Winner

Kimi Segarra-Ibañez

Kimi Segarra-Ibañez,
Senior, Aviation

Athens, OH 21 February 2020

Yesterday, a group of the ambassadors had the chance to meet one of the 2019 Russ Prize winner, Dr. Richard Schatz.

Dr. Schatz was a very professional and charming individual. Upon meeting him, all the ambassadors introduced themselves and sat down to listen to his guidance into the private sector and some advice for pursuing life and your goals. We quickly heard him discuss his passion for his career and medicine, but also his respect and understanding for the engineering field.

Dr. Schatz also expressed a huge admiration for the aviation industry, so those involved in that department and aerospace engineering got a deeper conversation out of it.

All in all, Dr. Schatz gave solid advice for us up-and-coming adults and delivered expert motivation in shooting for your dreams and working hard for what you want. This was a fun event all together. More events to hear wisdom from real life professionals outside of the school is something students can benefit from.

Meeting Russ Prize Winner Dr. Paul Yock

Lydia Seiter

Lydia Seiter,
Senior, Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering

Athens, OH 20 February 2020

One of the best parts of being an Ambassador is the opportunity to attend amazing networking events, like breakfast with the Russ Prize winners! Dr. Paul Yock, who was honored for his angioplasty system, came to visit campus this week to meet with students and give a lecture on his work.

Breakfast with Dr. Yock was wonderful. He was very engaging, and interested to hear all about the Ambassadors’ student experience at Ohio University. He asked us all about our majors, our professors, what we liked about the college, what we thought could be improved, and about our plans post-graduation. It was very clear to see his natural curiosity, not only for science, but just in conversation.

Dr. Yock’s lecture was packed—every chair in the room was full. He spoke at length about his inventions and his education. The most interesting part of the lecture was his description of the Stanford Byers Center for Biodesign, of which he is the founder and director.

He talked in detail about the design process that the students at the Center go through, which is identifying a specific problem with a clearly defined population. He talked about how he had failed at this in the past, and how important it is to keep a clear sight of your goal and purpose throughout the design process. This lesson is not only pertinent to biodesign, but for any engineering problem. It’s always important to keep the vision at the heart of your work.

Overall, I was so glad that Dr. Yock visited our campus, and that I had the opportunity to attend his breakfast and his lecture! The Ohio University Russ Prize is a wonderful award for achievements in bioengineering, and I encourage all students to take part in its yearly festivities.

Judging at Future City Regional Competition

Alexis Lanier

Alexis Lanier,
Senior, Electrical Engineering

Athens, OH 13 January 2020

Last Saturday, a few of my fellow ambassadors and I traveled to Columbus, Ohio, to participate as judges for the Future City Regional Competition.

The Future City competition is a competition that tasks teams of 6th-8th graders with designing a clean, sustainable city on Sim City. When designing their city, they must choose things such as energy sources, transportation, water resources; write an essay; construct a 3D model of their city; and then present it to judges at the competition. The theme of this year’s competition is “Clean Water: Tap Into Tomorrow.”

Future City Ohio Regional

When we arrived at the competition, we were separated into different categories for judging, and my job was judging the best use of energy. As soon as the competition started, I was amazed at how in-depth all the models were and impressed by the intelligence, inventiveness, and maturity each student showed. The models had to be partially made from recyclable materials and had to include a moving part.

While judging the best use of energy, we had to take into consideration how clean their energy sources were, how realistic they were, and if the energy source was reasonable with regards to the location their city. The energy sources ranged from solar or wind power to hydroelectric energy and biomass energy.

Each presentation was enjoyable and unique, and I was impressed with the students’ capability of answering any questions we had for them.

The Future City Competition is an incredible way for students to learn about engineering and gives them the chance to constantly think outside of the box. All of the groups did a wonderful job and it was awesome to see young students so excited and proud about the work they’ve done. Overall, judging the Future City Regional Competition was a great experience and I am glad I got to be a part of it.