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REF NO.: 182

SUBJECT: Engineering student receives highest honour in co-operative education

DATE: May 14

Laura Pittman, a fifth-year mechanical engineering student at Memorial University, will be honoured as the recipient of the 2011 Co-op Student of the Year Award on Thursday, May, 17.
Dr. Gary Kachanoski, president and vice-chancellor at Memorial, will join Ms. Pittman along with representatives from Memorial and Shell Canada from 8:30-9:30 a.m. in the Common Rooms, R. Gushue Hall, on the St. John’s campus. Media are invited to attend; there will be limited parking in front of R. Gushue Hall on Irwin’s Road.
The award, administered by the Canadian Association for Co-operative Education (CAFCE), is the highest honour in co-operative education in Canada. It is a significant milestone for both Ms. Pittman and Memorial University.
“This is the first time a Memorial student has received this award,” said Dr. Peter Rans, director, Division of Co-operative Education. “It is a major achievement and a huge recognition for the quality and success of our students and programs.”
Ms. Pittman said she is thrilled to receive the award.
“While it is always gratifying to be recognized for the hard work and dedication I've devoted to my education, what means the most to me is the potential impact it has on future engineering co-op students,” she said. “I am optimistic that this award can bring additional recognition to the importance of co-operative education, the quality of students that attend Memorial and, in particular, the quality of engineering students. To get where I am today takes a great deal of focus, determination and hard work. However, I could not have done it alone. I am fortunate to always have great support from my family, my mentors while completing my work terms and, of course, the faculty and staff within engineering and co-operative education at Memorial.”
Dr. Ramachandran Venkatesan, dean, pro tempore, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, echoed both Ms. Pittman’s and Dr. Rans’ sentiments.
“Laura’s achievement is truly noteworthy,” he said. “A national award is a significant recognition. Employers often tell us how pleased they are with Memorial’s engineering work term students. This recognition in an elite competition highlights the high quality of our students. This is a proud moment for all of us in the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science.”

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For more information, please contact Geoff Ash, communications co-ordinator, Student Affairs and Services, Memorial University, at (709) 727-6231 or  


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