09:33 AM

UST Celebrates New Engineering Facilities

University of St. Thomas-Houston unveiled Student Success Center and new engineering labs in Robertson Science Hall at the April 8 kickoff celebration. Funded by philanthropic gifts, including generous support from longtime friends of UST, Dick Evans, Lee Butler ’60, and Ray Kwan, as well as Title V funding from the U.S. Dept. of Education, the School of Engineering welcomed nearly 100 guests including prospective students and their families, donors, industry representatives, faculty, staff, students and alumni.

Just before the event, a beautiful Celebration of Life Mass was held for Dick Evans, a passionate champion for engineering, who passed away late last year. “I felt Dick’s presence that evening, as I often do, and I believe his spirit will live on through all the marvelous engineering students we met at UST,” exclaimed Gloria Portela, Mr. Evans’ widow and former UST Board Chair. Mr. Evans’ generosity will support the Dick Evans Chemical Engineering Endowed Scholarship. His legacy gift, along with the Dr. Sik Hung Kwan Physics Scholarship and the Braden-Butler Engineering Endowed Scholarship will support budding engineers at UST for decades to come. 

Physics & Engineering are In-Demand Fields

Physics and Engineering have always been in-demand fields due to a constant need for critical thinkers and problem solvers. Engineers are creators and inventors who solve complex, real-world problems using science and math. For every building constructed and new technology invented, an engineer has left their mark.

To meet that demand, UST offers the following bachelor’s degrees with most starting salaries near or above $100,000 according to Labor statistics. 

·         B.S. Mechanical Engineering

·         B.S. Electrical Engineering

·         B.S. Chemical Engineering

·         B.S. Engineering Physics

·         B.S. Physics

“It takes your dream of becoming a great engineer to get started with your studies, your desire and hard work to keep going, and your determination to cross the finish line at graduation – but you can trust that our team will be with you each step of the way and support you in following your dreams,” Dr. Birgit Mellis, chair of Physics and Engineering Department, said. 

Tour the Facilities

The newly renovated facility includes labs, lecture halls and a Success Center that occupies all three floors of Robertson Science Hall. Students have access to a Success Center Study Room and Student Lounge on the first floor that offers tutoring, proactive academic advising, peer-facilitated study groups, web-based tutorials, peer-mentoring program, internship opportunities and more. Lecture rooms are located on all three floors, and labs - electrical engineering lab, mechanical engineering lab, chemical engineering lab, engineer computer lab and an advance lab occupy space on the second and third floors. In the basement of the building is an engineering shop. Faculty offices are also located in Robertson. 

Our goal is to ensure each engineering student has access to the resources available to enhance their education and be successful in their career.” Mellis said. “The unveiling of this state-of-the-art renovation gives engineering students new facilities, new equipment and undergraduate research opportunities. Labs are a crucial part of each engineering degree program.”

Scholarships for Minority Students in STEM Available

In addition to state-of-the-art facilities, UST’s Physics and Engineering Department also participates in a three-year, $750,000 MSEIP grant from the U.S.  Department of Education to increase the number of minority graduates in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).