She has Civil Engineering in her genes
For Merrimack College senior Maggie Jacques, engineering runs in the family; both of her grandfathers were engineers. Maggie originally decided to try her hand at engineering in high school, when she discovered her passion for math and science. Maggie chose Merrimack because of the small atmosphere and the opportunities available to her as an engineering major.
Throughout her time at Merrimack, Jacques has used the knowledge and skills obtained in her studies to greatly impact others. She has been fortunate to participate in two trips to Haiti with the Civil Engineering team where the team has worked in the Haitian towns of Marmont and Casse. During their time in Marmont, they worked to repair an existing water system, which was damaged during the 2010 earthquake. A series of cholera outbreaks have taken place in Casse and the team is currently developing a plan to create a water system for the town, as none currently exists.
This year, Jacques has been named one of the new faces of civil engineering (College Edition) from the American Society of Civil Engineers which spotlights ten individuals from across the country who have excelled both in the field of engineering as well as promoting a spirit of volunteerism in using their skills for the betterment of society. As an ASCE “New Face,” Jacques is eligible to serve in the College Edition recognition program. If chosen, she will participate in a national media campaign with other top students and receive a $500 cash scholarship. Jacques notes that she was incredibly surprised. “I never thought I would actually be named one of the ten.”
Forget Coca-Cola, Pepsi or Perrier. There are people in Haiti who just want a simple drink of tap water without walking a couple of miles to get it. Civil engineering associate professor Marc Veletzos has been leading teams of student volunteers to the small community of Marmont in Haiti’s central plateau to improve access to clean water and help their physical injuries periodically since June 2011.
The Science and Engineering Department is in the first year of a five-year $448,856 grant from the National Science Foundation to retain and graduate more computer science and engineering students at part of the national Graduate 10K+ initiative over the next decade.