By Joseph DeVoe, Project Engineer, AREVA Federal Services LLC
Have you ever stumbled upon an opportunity that changes your life and career in ways you never would have imagined? For many of my colleagues and I, that change took place the moment we were selected for the College of Engineering Leadership Academy at UNC Charlotte.
The Leadership Academy is a two year program designed to provide the leadership skills and project management experience desired by the engineering industry; but not commonly taught in the classroom. The program is divided into four modules (one per semester): 1. Leadership / Communication / Team Building, 2. Engineering Ethics, 3. Project Planning, and 4. a final Capstone Project.
With the help of industry representatives and university professors, students attend a weekend retreat for each of the first three modules where they are taught the fundamentals of each particular module. The Capstone Project is a unique opportunity for the students to use what they have learned to successfully plan, budget, manage, and execute a service project of their choice which is funded by the Leadership Academy. The students are encouraged to come up with their own service project or to join someone else’s team. At the end of the fourth semester, each team presents their project, lessons learned, accomplishments, and measurable results of their efforts.
The Leadership Academy has pushed me to always seek professional development and embrace my engineering ambitions. It has given me the leadership skills, project planning experience, and confidence to manage any task. This program has made a lasting impression on my life and I continue to endeavor its success. As an engineer at AREVA, I have represented the company as a facilitator and mentor on multiple occasions during retreats and other Leadership Academy events.
AREVA proudly supports the College of Engineering Leadership Academy, is an advocate for the program model, and currently has a representative in its Advisory Committee.
For more information about the College of Engineering Leadership Academy at UNC Charlotte please see the Leadership Academy Website.
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