Engineering students celebrate achievements during annual hard hat ceremony

Each year, the School of Computing and Engineering honors its students with a signature event affectionately known as the hard hat ceremony.

During this year’s ceremony, 209 students were celebrated. Among them: 69 students received their initial achievement award in the form of their yellow hard hat, 67 received a discipline sticker for their hard hat showing advancement in the program and 77 students received a sticker representing their graduation year.

“I think it's really cool seeing how different people in the program come together from the different engineering programs,” said Sese Allerheiligen ’26 after receiving her initial achievement award. “We’re all different types of engineers but we still fall under the symbol of the hard hat and we come band together for this event.”

Other special achievement award stickers denoting Greek letters were given out to students who met various academic and service requirements over their academic career.

“I feel a mixture of a few things since this is my last hard hat ceremony,” said Juliana Sabin ’23 who received her pending graduation sticker. “I know there’s really exciting things coming after graduation, but it’s also a little bittersweet leaving this part of my life. I’m really grateful for everything School of Computing and Engineering has given me.”

This was the first hard hat ceremony and the first opportunity to address the School of Computing and Engineering for Dean Taskin Kocak who joined #BobcatNation last June. It was the ninth annual hard hat ceremony.

“As your new dean, I am committed to supporting our community in every way possible,” said Kocak. “I believe that education is not only about acquiring knowledge and skills, but also about developing a sense of social responsibility, intellectual curiosity, and a commitment to lifelong learning. I am dedicated to creating an environment that fosters academic excellence, personal growth, and a culture of respect and collaboration.”

This tradition is one that the computing and engineering community on campus looks forward to each year and establishes a collective identify on campus according to Kocak.

“The hard hat is a traditional symbol of an engineer – and even if you never wear one in your working career, it will forever be a symbol of your membership in our School of Computing and Engineering,” said Kocak.

All awards presented:
Progress in the major:
  • 69 Initial Achievement: For those who have completed the required course
  • 67 Advanced Achievement: For those who have successfully progressed in the program
  • 77 Graduation Achievement: For those who are graduating in May
Special achievements:
  • 29 Leadership Awards: For those who have served as an officer in recognized engineering organization
  • 131 Academic Awards: For those who have earned a 3.5 GPA in courses offered within the School of Computing and Engineering
  • 3 Research Awards: For those who have published or presented in professionally recognized journal or conference, or who have been awarded a QUIP-RS or external grant
  • 1 Competition Award: For those who have participated in a professionally recognized competition
  • 110 Service Award: For those who have volunteered in support of the School of Computing and Engineering
  • 57 Internship Award: For those who have completed an internship
  • 3 Dean’s Special Award: For those who have been selected by Dean’s Executive Council
Additional recognitions:
  • Friends of Computing and Engineering: Awarded to Provost Debra Leibowitz for her unwavering support for the students and faculty, and for her role in helping the School of Computing and Engineering achieving success
  • 2023 National Engineering Intern of the Year: Awarded to Hephzibah Rajan ’23 for being named the 2023 National Engineering Intern Student of the Year by the American Society for Engineering Education (ASEE).

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