Texas Sigma Rho
Arlington, TX 76019
Charter Date May 16, 1969
Chapter No. 90
Advisor Dr. Panos S. Shiakolas
Mechanical Engineering students at The University of Texas at Arlington petitioned the National Council for a charter of Pi Tau Sigma in the early spring of 1969. As a result, Texas Sigma Rho was installed on May 16, 1969, by President Donald R. Haworth.
The Texas Sigma Rho Chapter is currently working with the Mechanical Engineering Department and A.S.M.E. in the printing of manuals for the required undergraduate laboratories. Through pledge projects, improvements are made on various items belonging to the Mechanical Engineering Department and its associated organizations. The Chapter also actively participates in an annual Engineering Open House to promote engineering in the community.
In order to promote the high ideals of Pi Tau Sigma, the Texas Sigma Rho Chapter is working closely with the Mechanical Engineering Department in planning future projects which will help advance the engineering profession.
ANNUAL SUMMARY REPORTS
2022-2023, Juan Buritica Yate, President
During the current academic year, Texas Sigma Rho conducted two initiation ceremonies, one at the end of each semester. The Fall 2023 ceremony occurred in Woolf Hall 221, initiating six new members who took on vacant and newly created officer positions. These included Vice President, Secretary, ESC Representative, Activities Coordinator, and Social Media & Communications. The Spring 2023 initiation ceremony took place on May 10th in Woolf Hall 413, where ten new members were initiated, and active and new members were elected for the vacant President and Academic Excellence Officer roles. Throughout the year, Texas Sigma Rho prioritized strengthening member relations and improving communication to enhance outreach and create a more robust organization in the future. Collaboration with ASME, whose officers are also Pi Tau Sigma members, provided leverage for outreach efforts. The chapter attended the National convention at Auburn University in Alabama on March 17th-18th, with four representatives present, including the President, Vice President, Secretary, and newly elected President. This event allowed them to engage and learn from other organizations on cultivating and developing stronger chapters. The chapter learned valuable lessons from the convention, such as increasing the number of initiation ceremonies to two per semester, which helps counteract the high turnover of graduating students and increases the number of active members. They also emphasized consistent and efficient communication to foster better integration of the group and improve the quality of hosted activities. Moreover, attending the convention provided opportunities for members to interact with faculty and industry leaders, gaining insight into various industry fields and opening doors for potential internship opportunities.
During the 2021-2022 academic year, Texas Sigma Rho held three initiation ceremonies: One virtual initiation ceremony on December 16th, 2021, a virtual make-up initiation ceremony on December 22th, 2021, and one standard initiation ceremony on May 11th, 2022. Our chapter inducted a total of twelve (12) new members during this time period. During this time period, officer meetings and organization events utilized Microsoft Teams. During the Spring 2022 semester, we were able to have one virtual and in-person General Body meeting. This gave the chance for the Texas Sigma Rho members to meet the new members face to face. To help engage membership interaction, the chapter held virtual game nights through Microsoft Teams. This allowed additional social interactions between the members and much needed rest from the stress of Exams and Homework. Texas Sigma Rho also participated in two Activity Fairs hosted by UTA and the College of Engineering. These events made it possible reach out to freshman and transfer students, talk to them about Pi Tau Sigma, and encourage their success in the Mechanical Engineering program at UTA. The chapter also plans on holding a professional speaker event with real Mechanical Engineers from Elbit Systems of America. This event will allow the members to listen and engage with Engineers from the Industry about professional goals and applications for their academic studies. Lastly, the president and a member of Texas Sigma Rho were able to attend the Pi Tau Sigma National Convention in Chicago. By attending, Texas Sigma Rho was able to discuss new ways on how to engage with the National Convention and within our own organization.
December 16th, 2021
December 22nd, 2021
May 11th, 2022
2020-2021, Keerigan Rudd – President
During the 2020-2021 academic year, Texas Sigma Rho held three initiation ceremonies: One on November 30th, 2020, a make-up initiation ceremony on December 4th, 2020, and one on April 30th, 2021. Our chapter inducted a total of nine (9) new members during this time period. The COVID-19 pandemic provided new challenges for the chapter but made the best of it by moving our events to virtual settings. The chapter held a tutoring program where freshman and sophomores could get help with their courses from Texas Sigma Rho members. These tutoring sessions were designed to encourage self-learning and critical thinking while guiding students to solutions without telling them exactly how to solve a problem or giving them the answer. Multiple students who utilized this tutoring program became Pi Tau Sigma initiates later in the academic year. The chapter also held a professional speaker event where we invited other organizations to join and both listen and ask questions to an engineer from a major engineering company. Texas Sigma Rho also participated in multiple Activity Fairs hosted by UTA and the College of Engineering to reach out to freshman and transfer students, talk to them about Pi Tau Sigma, and encourage their success in the Mechanical Engineering program at UTA. This spring, many of the chapter’s members attended the virtual Pi Tau Sigma National Convention and participated in a group discussion regarding a potential change to the organization’s constitution.
November 30th, 2020
December 4th, 2020 (Make-Up Ceremony)
April 30th, 2021
2019-2020, James McQuade - President
During the 2019-2020 academic year, the chapter was focused on integrating events into the schedule that would drive member engagement and promote the society throughout the college of engineering and the university. The officers would hold regular general body meetings to get feedback from the members that would be used to generate events that are tailored towards the interests of the active members. These types of events included cookouts, social events, and various types of fundraisers. The largest event that was held was a cookout for the members at the universities recreational facility where the chapter intended to hold multiple sand volleyball games with the attendees. Unfortunately, the volleyball courts were rendered useless after the heavy rain that came in during the days leading up to the event. The event was still held but instead of playing sand volleyball, the members in attendance switched to playing pickup basketball games with various students that were at the universities outdoor basketball courts and was received well by the members. During the fall semester, the chapters officers and members also were involved in numerous activities held by the college of engineering and the university that were intended to promote student engagement and to advertise the organizations that are available to students. Among these events include the Engineering Welcome Back bash to expose new and current students at the university to the clubs that are available to the students and the Explore MAE event that was held by the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering department to allow new students to tour the labs that are performing research and the clubs that would be most beneficial for the MAE students to join to further increase the network in their field of study. Both events were represented well, and many new students expressed interest and are patiently anticipating their invitation to join the organization to broaden their network and skills. The chapter also hosted a grilled cheese fundraiser which was extremely popular among the students at the university and the organization ran unexpectedly ran out of supplies to make the sandwiches before the fundraiser. This fundraiser will be continued in following semesters due to the popularity among the students. An initiation was held during the fall semester and the chapter inducted six new initiates. A secondary initiation was held where six more initiates were inducted into the chapter totaling twelve new members. The spring semester started off strong with planning to hold events once better weather came around. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 no events were held for the chapter other than general body meetings and new member initiations. A virtual initiation was held during the spring semester and the chapter inducted five new initiates. A set of officers were also voted into positions.
2018-2019, Austin Smith - President
During the fall 2018 semester, Texas Sigma Rho participated in both the Engineering Welcome Bash and the Explore Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering activities, in September 2018. The College of Engineering welcome bash is an event geared toward new and returning engineering students, and is used as a way to begin the semester in an exciting manner. It is a way for the College of Engineering to greet engineering students upon returning or arriving to campus for the semester. Texas Sigma Rho was represented at the event, providing an info table to answer questions prospective initiates may have about the fraternity. The Explore Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering activity is an event held to welcome new undergraduates to the program. Students are encouraged to come so that they may interface with professors, visit Engineering research and teaching labs, and join student organizations. This event in particular is invite-only and restricted to new students. Texas Sigma Rho was again well represented at this event by providing an info table to answer questions and talk to students about the fraternity. An initiation was held on December 4, 2018, and Texas Sigma Rho inducted seven new initiates. At the induction ceremony, a former Pi Tau Sigma alumni came and talked to the new initiates. A welcome dinner was held the night of the induction. A makeup induction ceremony was held on December 13, 2018, and one more initiate was inducted.
Texas Sigma Rho was able to send three officers to the Pi Tau Sigma 2019 National Convention at Colorado State University on February 15-16. From the national convention, our officers were able to network with other Pi Tau Sigma chapters and ask what they did to get members involved. The University of Texas at Arlington has a career development center. In February, the chapter held a lunch and learn for the members. An associate from the career development center, came and gave a presentation about interview skills, and how to prepare for an interview, perform in an interview, and what to do after an interview. There were seven members present. Texas Sigma Rho participated in the University of Texas at Arlington College of Engineering E-Week. On February 21, Texas Sigma Rho provided an info table, and talked with students from the university and to high school students from the local high schools. An initiation was held on April 26, 2019, and Texas Sigma Rho inducted eleven new initiates. A welcome dinner was held the night of the induction. An election was held to define leadership positions for the coming year, and we are proud to announce that James McQuade was selected to succeed Austin Smith as President of Pi Tau Sigma Texas Sigma Rho. James is heading into his senior year at UTA, and is readily anticipating his fulfillment of this honorable role.
2017-2018, Gerald E. McQuade- President
Texas Sigma Rho participated in both the Engineering Welcome Bash and the Explore
Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering activities, in September 2017. The College of
Engineering welcome bash is an event geared toward new and returning engineering students,
and is used as a way to begin the semester in an exciting manner. It is a way for the College of
Engineering to greet engineering students upon returning or arriving to campus for the semester.
Texas Sigma Rho was represented at the event, providing an info table to answer questions
prospective initiates may have about the fraternity. The Explore Mechanical and Aerospace
Engineering activity is an event held to welcome new undergraduates to the program. Students
are encouraged to come so that they may interface with professors, visit Engineering research
and teaching labs, and join student organizations. This event in particular is invite-only and
restricted to new students. Texas Sigma Rho was again well represented at this event, providing
an info table, assistance with tours, and assistance in various labs during the event.
An initiation was also held in May 2018, and Texas Sigma Rho is proud to announce that
seven new individuals were initiated as members. An election was held to define leadership
positions for the coming year, and we are proud to announce that Austin Smith was selected to
succeed Gerald E. McQuade as President of Pi Tau Sigma Texas Sigma Rho. Austin is heading
into his senior year at UTA, and is readily anticipating his fulfillment of this honorable role.