Georgia Tech Nu
Atlanta, GA 30332
Charter Date November 29, 1932
Chapter No. 14
Advisor Dr. Akanksha Menon
A group of junior classmen, assisted by Professor R. S. King. formed a local organization known as the N.R.G. Society in the spring of 1932. The following fall the society petitioned Pi Tau Sigma and was granted representation at the 1932 annual convention at the University of Illinois. The representatives were initiated on November 18, 1932, and upon their return to Atlanta, they initiated the other charter members. Thus the installation of Georgia Tech Nu Chapter was completed on November 29, 1932. The chapter annually sponsors the presentation of Honors Day awards to the sophomore having the highest scholastic average and to the School's Outstanding Senior. It supports and maintains a student lounge in the Mechanical Engineering complex. It also represents the School of Mechanical Engineering during Engineers' Week with an exhibit. The chapter officers serve on the Student Liaison Committee of the School, a vital communication link between the student body and the school administration and faculty.
ANNUAL SUMMARY REPORTS
2022-2023; Author - Max Mateer, Spring 2023 President, and Anna Pavleszek, Fall 2022 President
For the 2022 to 2023 academic year, the Georgia Tech Nu Chapter focused its involvement into social, philanthropic, and administrative activities.
Within the social sphere, we filled our calendar with a trip to “PuttShack,” a local mini-golf-themed restaurant, trivia night at the local pizza joint, a Top Golf event, and an Atlanta Hawks game. Generally speaking, fall events yielded higher attendance than spring events, which was expected, as the intensity of the spring semester in Georgia Tech culture decreases attendance for all campus activities. That said, the Atlanta Hawks event was our greatest turnout, despite our seats being close to the nosebleeds. This was also the only event that didn’t feature exclusively Pi Tau Sigma organization and planning, as our contact on the Hawks’ PR team got us our seats.
Philanthropically, we had great success, and it can even be said that our philanthropy chairs were the most successful members of our executive boards for these two semesters. Our chapter volunteered at multiple locations, such as local parks, soup kitchens, and our own campus. We worked with Trees Atlanta to clean up parks and plant trees, as well as Campus Kitchens to box and serve meals to the local community. In both situations, participation was acceptable, though improvement was still desired. For our single volunteer event on campus, the Nu Chapter entirely organized the serving of doughnuts and coffee to students for free during an exam week. This event had the greatest level of success, with eight dozen doughnuts and two gallons of coffee being served over the course of three hours.
On the administrative side of our work, we brought in industry representatives to speak at each of our general meetings, hosted bent polishing events, and attended the convention at Auburn university. The first two were independently organized by the Nu Chapter, and they yielded strong showings (the industry speakers’ efficacy even led to many members later submitting applications to their companies). The convention was almost completely out of the Nu Chapter’s control, as Auburn Chi was in charge of it, though the President and Vice President of Membership in attendance were very pleased to be guests at the event.
Technically classifiable as administrative events as well are our two initiations, though they are much more of an essential element of the Pi Tau Sigma process than a supplementary activity like all those mentioned previously. Both of these were massive successes, especially in the context of financial complications being created by logistical rearrangements in the Georgia Tech bureaucracy preventing the spring 2023 initiation banquet from using any of the same resources as the fall 2022 banquet. Six new members were initiated in the former, and two were initiated in the latter.
2021-2022 James Fiorenza - Fall 2021, Reece Allen - Spring 2022
The 2021-2022 year demonstrated a return to normalcy after enduring the COVID-19 pandemic. This year featured a hybrid-type basis with events in person as well as online. The Georgia Tech Nu Chapter of Pi Tau Sigma rebounded from a challenging year and made efforts of getting everything back to normal if not better. This summary highlights several events that took place throughout the year for both members and initiates as well as executive efforts to keep the chapter moving in the right direction.
As far as professional development, this year the chapter was able to host several companies and provide members with opportunities to find internship, co-ops, and full time jobs. Capitalizing on the hybrid approach, several representatives from companies were able to join virtual calls that enabled better outreach. A few of these companies included Stellantis, Shell, BMW, and Kimber Manufacturing. While including these companies in the general meetings, the executive board still wanted to provide the in-person experience for better networking. ATA Engineering was able to send a representative to Atlanta to speak to the members of PTS as well as other students in the mechanical engineering school. Being able to host these sessions for members provided them a chance to enroll in a hands-on professional experience.
Requiring a philanthropy event for initiates shows PTS members that volunteer service has ample value. Trees Atlanta, an organization that rehabilitates parks and wildlife around the area, proved to be a great opportunity for members and initiates to give back to the community. Campus Kitchens, which became a staple in the spring semester, allowed members to have a more localized impact on campus. Members were able to pack food available from dining halls to give to less fortunate students at Georgia Tech.
In order to grow strong bonds within the chapter, social events were planned throughout the year. Trivia nights allowed members and initiates to converse and compete against others. Located right off of campus, Rocky Mountain Pizza and Ponko Chicken gave everyone the chance to participate. Spike-ball and bent-polishing were other ways to get involved with the society and encouraged a laid-back environment.
Each semester, the Georgia Tech Nu Chapter hosts a research fair allowing on-campus labs to show their research to prospective students. Moving back to in-person, these events hosted more than 10 labs and over 100 students. Catering was provided as an incentive to draw a great turnout. To encourage membership into the Nu chapter, both virtual and in-person initiations banquet were held. In total, 10 students joined our chapter in Fall 2021. The following semester, Spring 2022, 9 more students became members of Pi Tau Sigma. Both in-person initiation ceremonies were hosted at the GT Hotel with faculty guest speakers, Dr. Levi Woods and Dr. Akanksha Menon, who spoke about their relative fields.
Moving forward, the Nu Chapter hopes to be fully in-person to allow for better experiences with fellow members and the growth of stronger fraternal bonds.
2020-2021 Eric Biederman: President – Fall 2020, Samuel Billand: President – Spring 2021
The 2020-2021 year has been one of huge growth for Georgia Tech Nu. While most of the year was conducted online due to the COVID-19 pandemic, our chapter remained resilient and membership involvement flourished. This summary will highlight the events for members and the efforts of our executive board that culminated in our chapter receiving 3rd place in the Most Outstanding Chapter Award from Nationals this past year.
First, we hosted many virtual professional development events for our members this year including sessions from Gulfstream, Naval Nuclear Labs, and Shell, to name a few. These aimed to connect our members with job opportunities and expand our professional network.
A member-independent approach was taken to address volunteering for the Fall semester using the HandsOnAtlanta program, where philanthropic opportunities are compiled for easy selection and commitment. Events included Books For Africa book-drives and Piedmont Park clean-ups. Spring 2020 volunteering largely consisted of weekly in-person events through TreesAtlanta, in which we helped plant hundreds of trees in the local community parks and neighborhoods of Atlanta.
To maintain strong fraternal bonds, social events were held weekly throughout the year. When in-person, events included trivia nights, spikeball, Top Golf, and key polishing. Virtually, we met for game nights and even more trivia.
Every semester, the Nu chapter hosts an undergraduate mechanical engineering research fair designed to provide professors and graduate students a space to showcase their research and recruit undergraduates in a more fun, exciting environment. Georgia Tech is one of the most impressive research institutes in the world and sometimes getting into research labs can be tough and daunting. We chose to host an event that would use our faculty network to assist our fellow students in getting positions. Both the Fall and Spring 2020 fairs were held virtually through a Discord server with tremendous success where over 12 labs and 50 undergraduates participated.
7 undergraduates were initiated into our chapter in Fall 2020. The following semester, Spring 2021, 10 undergraduates and 2 graduates were initiated, the first time in chapter history that we have had Master’s and Ph.D. seeking members. Both initiation ceremonies were hosted at the GT Hotel with faulty guest speakers, Dr. Richard Simmons and Derek Nichols, presenting about sustainable energy and fluid mechanic emerging technologies, respectively.
Beyond member events, this year’s board has also begun a restructuring process of our initiation requirements. Starting in the Spring 2021 semester, we now require that each initiate holds an executive board position the following semester, with reasonable exception. To account for having a larger executive board, we have introduced social and philanthropy committees that hold lower responsibilities. We believe this will solve our issues with member retention post-initiation, and will establish a more cohesive and long-lasting board that can tackle larger ventures and grow our presence on campus. This idea goes in tandem with our newfound turnover documents; in which we have improved the process of passing our lessons learned, organization operations, and outstanding ideas between executive boards
2019-2020 Jacob Evans: President – Spring 2020, Katherine Freesemann: President – Fall 2019
The 2019-2020 year has been a huge growth opportunity for Georgia Tech Nu. Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, the mainstream events for initiates and general members remained largely unchanged from previous years. However it was discovered that certain big-picture projects that had been in the works from previous years had fallen through the cracks over the course of many executive board transitions. This summary will highlight the continuing events for initiates and general members, the big-picture items that were recovered this year, and the work that remains to be done.
We hosted many professional development events for our members this past year. These included information sessions from Clorox, Pratt and Whitney, Caterpillar, GM Electric Vehicles Division, and a planned session from Shell that had to be canceled due to COVID. These were supplemented by research presentations by Dr. David Hu on biomechanics and former Georgia Tech president Dr. Bud Peterson on the future of engineering education.
A few new philanthropic activities were incorporated into the fall and spring semesters. The most influential new philanthropy event was our participation in Georgia Tech’s Team Buzz philanthropy event in the fall semester, where members and initiates joined with other Georgia Tech fraternities, sororities, service organizations, and honor societies to volunteer at locations across Atlanta. We intended to follow this up with participation in Tech Beautification Day, Georgia Tech’s large philanthropy event held every spring. This, unfortunately, was canceled due to COVID.
Every semester, the Nu chapter hosted an undergraduate mechanical engineering research fair. Georgia Tech is one of the most impressive research institutes in the world and sometimes getting into research labs can be tough and daunting. We chose to host an event that would help our fellow students get positions. The research fair provided professors and graduate students a space to showcase their research and recruit undergraduates in a more fun, exciting environment. While the spring fair had to be canceled due to COVID, we are planning an even bigger presence next year to help connect the graduate and undergraduate communities at Georgia Tech.
Beyond member events, this year’s board has also begun a restructuring process of our google drive, our chapter website, and our campus image. The website in particular has been down and inaccessible for at least a year. We are in the process of restoring the website to working order. Included in this project is the need to update our LinkedIn website and Georgia Tech campus website. This is a work in progress that will be passed on to the next executive board. However, the website is a symptom of the larger issue of continuity across executive boards. We worked to solve this by writing turnover documents to be passed from officer to officer. Included in these documents will be the responsibilities, timelines, and contacts relevant to that role in addition to unfinished work that needs to be continued.
2018-2019 Steven Kochansky President
The 2018-2019 year has been one of both consistency and progress for the Georgia Tech Nu chapter. Our previous annual goal was to internally restructure the Nu chapter into a stronger chapter that can be recognized as a top chapter nationally. We believe that this goal was truly accomplished during the 2017-2018 year. Our goal for the 2018-2019 year was to better understand and serve our members. A general open discussion was held during the first chapter meeting and resulted in a list of professional, academic, and philanthropic development activities and events that our members were excited and passionate about.
We hosted many professional development events for our members this past year. We secured and continued sponsorships with Shell, Eaton Corporation, GE Power, The Home Depot, and Pratt & Whitney. 7 of 10 general meetings included information sessions, providing our members with ample opportunity for professional growth, networking, and knowledge. A GE Power sponsored bowling social and a Shell sponsored Topgolf social provided members with one-on-one networking opportunities with company representatives. Multiple members reported securing internships and full-time positions because of the professional events hosted by the Nu chapter throughout the year.
The Nu chapter began an Invention Studio event series for members to learn how to operate equipment like 3D printers and laser engravers at one of the most prestigious makerspaces in the country. We designed and crafted things like keychains and coasters to gift to professors and staff in the mechanical engineering department. We had a lot of positive feedback on this event series and are looking to expand in order to have members train on a more comprehensive set of equipment.
A few new philanthropic activities were incorporated into the fall and spring semesters. We hosted sandwich making events sponsored and paid for by Shell. At these events, we made and packed over 100 sandwiches and donated them to a local homeless shelter. We hosted a mental health awareness event on Pi day, 3/14, and let students ‘pi’ us in the face with whipped cream to alleviate some stress and have a few laughs. Progress through service!
Lastly, a signature event combines professional, academic and philanthropic aspects was introduced to campus both spring and fall semesters. The Nu chapter hosted an undergraduate mechanical engineering research fair. Georgia Tech is one of the most impressive research institutes in the world and sometimes getting into research labs can be tough and daunting. We chose to host an event that would help our fellow students get positions. The research fair provided professors and graduate students a space to showcase their research and recruit undergraduates in a more fun, exciting environment. Both fall and spring research fair were a hit, with over 15 research labs and over 80 undergraduates attending the event. The Nu chapter prepares to increase the size and campus involvement of the fair in subsequent semesters.
2017-2018 Harry S. Liu President
The 2017-2018 year has been one of both consistency and progress for the Georgia Tech Nu chapter. The annual goal this year was to restructure the Nu chapter into not only a stronger chapter than previous years but also one that can be recognized as a top chapter nationally. To accomplish this, an open floor discussion facilitated by the executive officers was held, allowing many new ideas and suggestions to come to light. The result of this chapter meeting was a list of effective chapter practices, ineffective current chapter practices, and new chapter practices inspired by the top chapters at the annual PTS national convention. The first course of action was to review the effective chapter practices to figure out why they work so well and to make sure that these practices are continued by future officers. Second, the ineffective chapter practices were scrutinized to discover the root cause of each problem. Based on analysis and discussion, the Nu chapter made appropriate changes to solve these problems. An excellent example was restructuring the executive positions so the responsibility of each position is more clearly defined and individual officers are being held more accountable for their role. Finally, the Nu chapter implemented new ideas and planned for the implementation of bigger projects for future semesters. Amongst the new ideas implemented this year, two particular ideas stood out to be the most successful. The first was to consistently hold bi-weekly meetings and invite a keynote speaker to present at each meeting. The keynote speaker can be a professor, a corporate recruiter, or anyone else we feel can provide useful knowledge to our already highly talented members. As a result, meeting attendance increased significantly, new potential corporate sponsors are introduced, and multiple members have received internships or jobs. The second new idea was to start an executive officer mentorship program. This was created to combat the high turnover rate that the chapter experiences which results in new officers fighting a learning curve before they fully understand the responsibility of their role. The program allows members interested in becoming future officers to shadow the current officers, sit in on officer meetings, and take care of minor responsibilities for their respective officers to get a feel of what it takes to run the chapter. As a result, more capable members are running for the general elections and the official turnover process each semester run more efficiently than the previous one. The Nu chapter not only focuses on the current goals but are always looking for future opportunities to improve the chapter. The biggest project being planned for future semesters is hosting a signature event every semester that combines the social, philanthropic, and fundraising aspects of the smaller events currently hosted by the Nu chapter. If successfully executed, this event will promote recognition of our chapter on campus and with potential corporate sponsors, increase membership, and generate funds to expand the involvement of our chapter within the Atlanta and Georgia Tech community.