Tennessee Sigma Nu
Cookeville, TN 38505
Charter Date May 11, 1968
Chapter No. 86
Advisor Dr. Chris Wilson
Realizing the need for an honor society in the Mechanical Engineering Department at Tech, several students under the guidance of Professor H. C. Hewitt, Jr. petitioned Pi Tau Sigma in the fall of 1967. The petition having been accepted, National President, E. K. Springer and Central Vice-President, E. M. Jerger, installed the Tennessee Tech Sigma Nu chapter in May 11, 1968.
The members of the Sigma Nu Chapter are not only interested in departmental service, but also in providing the services of an "engineer to be" to non-engineering students needing technical assistance. Sigma Nu members participate in such activities as Engineer's Day, freshman orientation, registration, and graduate research.
ANNUAL SUMMARY REPORTS
2022-2023, Andrew Gothard, Chapter President
Following several tough semesters caused by COVID-19, our chapter is regaining strength and momentum. During this semester our aim was to increase our focus and participation for in-person service events. This semester we returned to having all of our meetings, social events, and service events in person, which has accentuated the activity of members and initiates. During both the fall and spring semesters we held regular service events to benefit our school and the local community. In our campus community, we wanted to focus on developing our tutoring service for underclassmen. We continued to offer help for freshman and sophomore mechanical engineering classes and math classes. Students from any department could participate in the tutoring sessions. However, this year we decided to remove virtual attendance from tutoring sessions and decrease the length of each session. With these changes, we saw an increase in participation from students and members. Additionally, in the fall semester, we held campus clean-up events after several football games to remove the trash that had been left and make our campus more presentable. We also held a canned food drive both semesters to support the food pantry on campus, which provides food to students who can’t afford it. We also held other service events that benefitted the community around us. We were able to participate in STEM outreach events such as Fab Friday and Safari Saturday, where PTS members and initiates introduced STEM topics to elementary and middle school students. Another event that many of our members participated in was called Letters of Love. Letters of Love gives members the opportunity to send encouraging and meaningful letters to children who are sick in the hospital.
Our chapter also continued the tradition of serving our global community by assembling Operation Christmas Child boxes to be given to children in less fortunate parts of the world during the fall semester. The shoeboxes are filled with toys, educational materials, hygiene products, and more. Members and initiates were required to participate in this event.
2020-2021, Abby Collier, Chapter President
Fall 2020 was a big change for the Tennessee Sigma Nu chapter as we struggled to decide how to proceed with the semester as far as serving TTU campus and Cookeville. Many students were still attending classes virtually which meant that they were either not in Cookeville or not willing to risk sickness coming to activities. We elected to allow service events to change in that the members and initiates were allowed to complete a service activity of their choosing on their own time. We provided them with some in-person and virtual ideas which included: donating blood, tutoring an underclassman virtually/in-person, aiding with Missing Maps, or volunteering at the local animal shelter. With some restrictions lifting and a few more students returning to in-person, we were able to host a few service events on campus. Those included writing notes to the local nursing home and a campus cleanup. This academic year the chapter wanted to focus on bringing tutoring back as a forefront of our service on campus. Current members completed at least one hour of tutoring (with many choosing to do another) for any freshman or sophomore level mechanical engineering course. We learned from mistakes each semester and decided to move tutoring locations as well as offer online attendance.
Every fall semester our chapter participates in Operation Christmas Child, an organization devoted to making sure children in impoverished homes receive basic needs. This year we were able to send out 13 boxes. Since the town was still recovering from the deadly tornados from May 2020, many students were still without jobs or homes and relying on the TTU Food Pantry for basic necessities. The group service event in the spring involved members bringing a minimum of ten cans for the cause. Many members went above and beyond the requirement bringing as many as 20 cans or large monetary donations. Over the academic year, we were able to donate 150 cans along with $145 (approximately 120 cans). This year we were able to learn a lot about our needs for our campus and town and hope to continue doing so in the upcoming year.
2019-2020, Nathaniel Lovin, President
Every semester, our chapter strives to build relationships with members and candidates through regular meetings, social events, and service events held throughout the semester. During the Fall of 2019, we put special emphasis on service events that would benefit our school and the local community. We held a campus cleanup to help make our campus more presentable during the many construction projects on campus. We regularly volunteered at Fab Friday and Safari Saturday, which are workshops put on by the STEM center that help expose grade school age children to the STEM Field. Each workshop has a different theme, but all are focused on providing fun hands-on activities for the children to spark their interest in STEM concepts. Volunteers for these events help by setting up, working with the kids during the activities, and cleaning up afterwards. Additionally, the Tennessee Sigma Nu chapter provides free tutoring each semester, with a focus on MATLAB and Engineering Graphics during the Fall 2019 semester. We were able to serve the global community through our chapter’s group service event by assembling 15 Operation Christmas Child boxes to be given to children in less fortunate parts of the world. These are shoe boxes or plastic boxes of comparable size that are filled with toys, hygiene products, educational materials, and much more.
The service events during the Spring 2020 semester were very different due to the effects of COVID-19. Much of our group service events were cancelled due to state orders. On March 3rd, 2020, Cookeville and the surrounding Middle Tennessee area was hit hard by a devastating tornado that took many lives and destroyed hundreds of homes. The need for volunteers was overwhelming in our area. Many members of the Tennessee Sigma Nu chapter volunteered in various ways during the time of need by whatever means necessary, such as: search and rescue, debris cleanup, and comforting families through their losses. The mindset of service that is encouraged within the Tennessee Sigma Nu chapter was made evident during this time of need, when everyone pulled together to get through the difficult time. Candidates and members were asked to find individual service opportunities over the summer wherever possible while staying safe during the time of crisis with COVID-19.
2018-2019, Daniel Bogard, President
During the fall of 2018, we served the local community through various events. We performed campus clean up to help offset the mess incurred during the many construction projects on campus such as roofing which inevitably disperses bits of shingles and tar-paper. We volunteered at Fab Friday and Safari Saturday which are STEM workshops that staff at Tennessee Tech organize periodically, each with a unique theme. These workshops provide grade schoolers a chance to experience technology and science in ways they never have before in the hopes that they will gain a greater appreciation for STEM fields and maybe even pursue related careers. Some of the subjects included water filtration/conservation, freshwater creatures, geo-mapping/topography, and robotics. We offered tutoring for freshmen and sophomore mechanical engineering students in thermodynamics and fluids. We served the global community through our chapter’s group service event by assembling 28 Operation Christmas Child boxes to be given to children in less fortunate parts of the world. These are shoeboxes or plastic boxes of comparable size filled with toys, educational products, hygiene products, and more.
The service events of the spring were similar to the fall, including campus cleanup, park cleanup, Volunteering at Fab Fridays and Safari Saturdays, and tutoring in graphics and programming. The chapter’s group service event was volunteering to help staff the Baja event which was hosted by Tennessee Tech. This event spanned several days and included 120 teams from around the world, so it required a lot of volunteers. Members helped by lap counting, spotting difficult sections of track, distributing water, cleanup, and various other tasks.
Many members of the Tennessee Sigma Nu chapter are personally active in the community through various avenues such as church related ministries, Habitat for Humanity, and others. This mindset of service is encouraged by PTS at Tennessee Tech.