RCEL wins Rice Global E&C Forum 2016 Award for Excellence

Press release from the Rice Global Forum

Rice Center for Engineering Leadership recognized for enriching engineering education

HOUSTON—A program at Rice University that provides engineering students with leadership, team-participation, communication, and entrepreneurial skills not covered in traditional engineering curricula was named recipient of the 2016 Award for Excellence by the Rice Global Engineering & Construction Forum (RGF). C. Fred Higgs III, Ph.D., Faculty Director of the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership (RCEL), accepted the RGF award this evening at the VIP Banquet opening the RGF’s 19th annual fall conference.

Established in 2009 with a gift from John (’73, ’74) and Ann (’75, ’76) Doerr, RCEL’s mission is to prepare engineers to become inspiring leaders, exceptional team members, effective communicators, and bold entrepreneurs. RCEL students learn to create and communicate a vision, build high-performing teams, form and execute collaborative plans, and create innovations that endure. The program includes:

  • Leadership Theory,
  • Active Learning (Engineering Leadership Labs),
  • Leadership Development Plans,
  • Communication Skills,
  • Guided Internships, and
  • Networking and Industry Exposure.

In 2014, RCEL programming expanded to include a formal undergraduate engineering leadership certificate. The Certificate in Engineering Leadership enhances the basic leadership, management and followership skills needed to impact change within an organization in the first five years of an engineer’s career, thereby accelerating the individual’s advancement to industry leadership roles. The goal of the Certificate is to grow the number of potential leaders entering industry at an accelerated rate and to create a sustainable flow of new engineering leadership. RCEL continues to work toward providing a workforce that is prepared to lead and innovate.

“The Rice Global E&C Forum is pleased to recognize the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership as the 2016 recipient of our Award for Excellence,” said Martin Van Sickels, RGF Executive Director. “Instilling non-traditional skill sets that enhance the ability of new engineers to conceive, develop, and implement innovative solutions to complex engineering problems has the potential to improve both processes and outcomes across all engineering disciplines.”

“I am honored that the Rice Global E&C Forum is recognizing the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership with this year’s Award for Excellence,” Higgs said. “RCEL faculty and staff strive every day to make an impact on our students, who will one day be the new engineers and leaders making an impact in the industry and the world.“

About the RGF’s Award for Excellence:

  • The Award for Excellence was established in 2011 by the Rice Global E&C Forum to acknowledge an individual, group or organization for a significant event or outstanding performance in an Engineering and Construction industry-related activity. The award is presented once a year at the RGF fall conference.
  • Any E&C company may nominate a candidate for the award, but all nominations must be formally submitted by a sponsoring RGF board member using the official nomination form. Non-Forum companies must submit nominations through an RGF board member.
  • Categories for recognition include a notable business improvement or development, unique technical solution or innovation, project execution excellence, global growth, and young engineers programs. However, nominators may create new categories if they can provide compelling reasons.
  • Members of the Award for Excellence committee evaluate nominees based upon key criteria, including: the contribution to sustaining or improving the E&C industry; for addressing an industry-wide issue or highly challenging problem; for receiving broad industry recognition for taking a major step forward; and for generating ongoing social benefits in the community.

About the Rice Center for Engineering Leadership: The Rice Center for Engineering Leadership (RCEL) was established in 2009 with a gift from John ’73, ’74, and Ann ’75 Doerr. RCEL’s mission is to prepare engineers to become inspiring leaders, exceptional team members, effective communicators, and bold entrepreneurs. The official Engineering Leadership Certificate, approved in 2014, enhances a traditional engineering education by providing skills not typically covered in the Rice engineering curriculum. Through a series of curricular and co-curricular learning experiences, RCEL students learn to create and communicate a vision, build a high-performing team, form and execute collaborative plans, and create innovations that endure. Learn more at www.rcelconnect.org.

For more information about RCEL please contact: Kazimir Karwowski. RCEL Executive Director, at 713-348-3181 or Klk5@rice.edu or Amanda Prestia, RCEL Marketing and Events Specialist, at (713) 348-2731 or aprestia@rice.edu.

About the Rice Global Engineering & Construction Forum: The Rice Global E&C Forum is a voluntary academic-industry organization dedicated to stimulating original thinking, discussion, and resolution of the major economic, political, strategic and technological challenges and opportunities faced by global engineering and construction companies.

For more information about the RGF, please contact: Martin Van Sickels, RGF executive director, at 281-370-0374 or martinvs@sbcglobal.net; Alan English, RGF Board of Directors chair, at 832-379-7888 or alan.english@ihi-ec.com; or A. D. Koen, RGF media advisor, at 713-812-1623 or adkoen@comcast.net.