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Powell Scholars Program
Callison Hall
Courtney Lehmann, Ph.D.
Program Director
University of the Pacific
3601 Pacific Avenue
Stockton, CA 95211


Dinelle Davis
Program Assistant
University of the Pacific
3601 Pacific Ave
Stockton, CA 95211

Second Dimension

Demonstrate leadership in an area of interest - in an organization or research or artistic endeavor

Alene Lai Directing the SWE Dining With Industry Event

SWE Executive Board Group Picture

Students Interacting With Employers

Event Banner

Scholar Alene Lai (Bioengineering), president of Pacific's Society of Women Engineers (SWE) Chapter, led the organization of the SWE Dining With Industry event, which gave students the opportunity to connect with industry.

I always had a brewing passion for gender equality in STEM. As a biomedical engineering major with a fiery interest for beneficial change in my community, I decided to take on the role as president of the Society of Women Engineers (SWE) club on campus. The UoP SWE chapter is a part of the collective national organization; together, SWE works to empower women pursuing careers in engineering, a field that is predominantly male-based.

A personal goal of mine for SWE in my first year of presidency was to find a way to unite professional engineering companies and industries with the university’s School of Engineering and Computer Science. The motivation behind this was to create a precious networking dynamic between students and industries as well as raise awareness for SWE’s main purpose: the empowerment of women.

I decided to accomplish this goal with an event called “Dining With Industry.” Dining With Industry is an event that allows engineering companies and students to come together over a dinner meal. It gives engineering students an opportunity to network and make relationships with potential employers and it gives employers the chance to get to meet students and support SWE.

The planning process took four months; in those four months, the SWE executive board contacted students and recruited employers to attend the event. We planned the agenda of the night, corresponded with employers and students, publicized the event, and created a welcoming space for the dinner, among many more tasks. I grew both professionally and personally during this four months.

The night of the Dining With Industry event was a huge success. More than 70 students and employers came out to enjoy dinner and networking with the Society of Women Engineers. SWE successfully provided a space to facilitate conversation between students and companies. We spoke about SWE and its goals, as well as communicated the importance for women empowerment in STEM fields.

In the coming weeks after the event, SWE has been contacted by multiple company representatives who are interested in getting involved in SWE gatherings on campus. The club has career panels and speakers lined up, as well as collaborations with other clubs on campus.

The Powell Scholars Program has given me the confidence to guide SWE to success. It has provided me the skills necessary to lead and plan a large school-wide event. Through this experience, I have realized my capabilities as a leader and promoter of large-scale change. The Dining With Industry event accomplished my goal to spread the word of SWE’s purpose to promote gender equality and to unite the engineering student body with a helpful networking event.

~ Alene Lai

Jambassadors Performing

Scholar Jimmy Kraft (Jazz Studies, Music Composition) started a jazz group called the Jammbassadors, which specializes in performing original music, covers, and jazz standards in both traditional and contemporary styles.

Juggling Club Practices with Diabolos
Samuel Costigan, Dr. Christopher Goff

Scholar Samuel Costigan (Mechanical Engineering) started a juggling club, which teaches members about various circus skills.

Elizabeth Youngberg

Scholar Elizabeth Youngberg (History) served as the vice president of ASUOP and was highly involved in many organizations on campus.

Bea Woods's One Word

Scholar Bea Woods (English) played a key role in bringing The Society of English Cohorts to Pacific.

The Society of English Cohorts is a new English club on campus; it started in Fall 2010. I was part of the original executive board in the position of treasurer. SEC is open to people of all majors and minors as long as everyone shares a love of English!
~ Bea Woods

Alex Edfort Golfing

Scholar Alex Edfort (Business Administration) was co-captain of Pacific's golf team. In 2010, he qualified for the 110th US amateur championship in University Place, WA.

I had to place top 4 in a local qualifier in New Jersey for the chance to compete at this tournament. The qualifier had more than 80 players from various states and countries. I tied for fourth in the qualifier with two other competitors and went into a sudden death playoff for the final spot. I outlasted them, eventually winning it on the fourth playoff hole.
~ Alex Edfort

Scholars Michael Abram (Mathematics) and Alicia Still (Mathematics) were president and secretary of the Math Club, respectively. Several years ago, they hosted the event “Math and Origami, and Evening of Exploring the Intersection of Mathematics with the Japanese Art of Paper Folding.