He’s done it again!
Just a short while after receiving the Dwight David Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship Program (DDETFP) Transportation Research Board Fellowship, Mario Rojas has secured another fellowship – this time, the Chi Epsilon Graduate Fellowship.
Chi Epsilon is a nationwide civil engineering honor society established in 1923. It currently has 131 active chapters and well over 100,000 members.
A few months back, the faculty advisor for FIU’s Chi Epsilon chapter, Dr. Seung Jae Lee, sent out an email to its members encouraging them to apply for the Graduate Fellowship. Rojas wanted to apply, but with graduation nearing, he was focused on other things.
Luckily, Dr. Lee sent out a reminder just before the October 15th deadline and Rojas found the time to quickly submit all the required documents. After just two months of waiting for a reply, it turns out that Rojas was selected as one of two fellows in the nation to receive $3,500 this year.
“I was completely shocked. I had applied for the Undergraduate Scholarship last year around the same time and the email I got back from them said, ‘Thank you for applying but [we can not accept you] at this time.’ And so, when I got an email now from Chi Epsilon I was expecting the same rejection,” said Rojas.
And what will he do with the $3,500?
“I plan to use the money for the tuition, books, and fees of my Master’s program,” said Rojas.
Rojas is currently enjoying his winter break after graduating this past Fall 2015 with his Bachelor’s in Civil Engineering. He was enrolled in the BS/MS Civil Engineering program, which allowed him to take graduate courses in his last few semesters of undergraduate school, and left him with just two more semesters to finish his Master’s degree in Civil Engineering next Fall 2016.
This Spring semester, he will start his position as Coordinator of the Engineers on Wheels program. Although he has not ruled out enrolling in a PhD program in the future, he wants to take a break from academics after graduating with his Master’s and find a job in the civil engineering industry.
The CEE Department extends its sincerest congratulations to Mario Rojas and wishes him the best of luck in his future endeavors.