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KU Engineering Self Engineering Leadership Fellows gain insight into industry

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

LAWRENCE — California’s innovative tech scene will soon get a close-up look from 19 members of the senior class of the Self Engineering Leadership Fellows at the University of Kansas School of Engineering.

The group will travel to Los Angeles from Aug. 10-17, where they will visit some of the world’s leading engineering and tech enterprises, including the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, The Spaceship Company and Avery Dennison, an adhesive manufacturer. The experience is known as SELF on the Road.

“We meet with execs and high-level engineers at businesses in the Fortune 500, startups and everything in between,” said Adam Smith, senior coordinator with the SELF Program.

The idea is to help SELF seniors begin to chart their postgraduate careers.

“The primary goal is they meet these industry leaders and chart their own path to that,” Smith said. “We do a lot of talks with CEOs — most of them are KU alums or KU-adjacent in some way — and ask, what kind of experiences do you need for success? Our secondary goal is to help them see what types of industry they could be involved with.”

It’s also an opportunity for networking — while in Southern California, SELF fellows will participate in two events. One will feature KU alumni as well as prospective students and those who have applied to the KU School of Engineering. The other event is with donors to the university.

“It’s a great opportunity to connect with Jayhawks from all over,” Smith said. “We’re really fortunate we have a strong SELF alumni group in LA. They make the trip extra special.”

This is the fourth year of the trip. Previous classes of SELF fellows traveled to Seattle, Portland, Austin and Houston. You can read about this year’s trip in real time at the SELF on the Road blog.

Photo: SELF seniors visit Johnson Space Center Rocket Park in Houston during the 2016 SELF on the Road trip. 

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