Leadership in Action – By Dr. DeRuntz

          The LDP is committed to developing servant leaders who will make a difference in this world. For that reason, we have always sought to reach out and develop the RSOs in our university while also building our leadership skills. While much of our formal college education is traditionally learned in the classroom, effective leadership can only be learned from doing. There is no better place to fail safely or achieve success than working with our peers on a technical project team.

          Applying leadership principles in our RSOs also elevates and improves those around us. Sometimes this is in the form of winning a regional or national title, sometimes it is seeing your peers adopt your good dining etiquette. Either way, it is a great time in student’s lives to grow personally and to help lead others to achieve great accomplishments.

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LDP Member Spotlight – Robert Lozar-McDonald

     I am from the east-central section of the state not far from Champaign-Urbana and the University of Illinois. I lived most of my life in the country; a spot I jokingly used to refer to as “30 miles just south of nowhere”. I originally went to college at the University of Illinois and I studied Aerospace Engineering. Unfortunately, I had to drop out during the recession to get a job and help take care of my family. While working in the retail industry, I went to the local community college and earned my associates degree in Engineering Sciences.

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LDP Member Spotlight – Gannon Druessal

      I went to a small high school just outside of Bloomington, Illinois called Tri-Valley. I participated in baseball and played on our state champion football team. Community is a big part of my town, so I also completed a lot of volunteering and community service. I saw myself grow more and more interested in the human body throughout high school which led me to study Physiology/Pre-Med at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

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Striving for My Future – by Venkat Ramana Reddy

My name is Venkat Ramana Reddy Vootukuri and I am a graduate student pursuing my my masters degree in the civil engineering. My path to the USA from India was full of difficult hurdles to over-come. Some of the hurdles are being away from home, passing my exams, obtaining my visa, and my academic scholarship. After finishing my bachelors degree, my dream of pursuing my graduate degree in the United States was within reach.

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Gaining the World – by Jingsong “John” Dong

 Studying abroad is a big challenge for every international student. Still, millions of international students study in foreign countries for various reasons. Every student has his or her reasons to learn abroad. My reason for leaving China and coming to the U.S. is to shape my mind so that it can listen to different voices and think deeply. I hope to open the gate of the world by learning here in the United States.

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How I Got Here – by Faisal Alsuwailem

I graduated with an Associates Degree in Mechanical Engineering Maintenance Technology in 2014.  After my Associates, I worked for SABIC, a chemical manufacturing company in Saudi Arabia, for seven months as a mechanical technician. I eventually resigned to continue my higher education in the United States. I came in the spring of 2015 and I studied English for two months to pass my TOEFL exam before enrolling in the College of Engineering.

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