Technology Recognizes Top Achievers

Left to Right: Orlando Mejia, Jason Casey, Mydhilipurnima Palagummi, Michelle Piech, Joe Compean, John Baudoin
Left to Right: Orlando Mejia, Jason Casey, Mydhilipurnima Palagummi, Michelle Piech, Joe Compean, John Baudoin

On Friday, December 18, 2015, hundreds of University of Houston College of Technology students earned undergraduate and graduate degrees. A reception to celebrate their achievements was held immediately before the march across the stage later that afternoon. Dr. Neil Eldin, interim dean for the College of Technology along with, faculty, and staff proudly saluted the students and announced the awards.

Designed to honor excellence in academic achievement in the College of Technology, the Dean's Medal of Academic Excellence is awarded to the highest ranking students graduating with a grade point average of 3.75 or above with the final 66 hours in residence at the University of Houston. A one thousand dollar award accompanies the medal. Dr. Eldin presented the Medal to Jason Casey.

Casey maintained the highest GPA in the College of Technology and made the Dean's list consistently for four years. At a turning point during his 10 year career at Home Depot, he decided to pursue a degree and enrolled in a community college while working nights - eventually, making his way to the University of Houston to start working on a B.S. in industrial design and then switching to computer information systems. Jason began a part-time position as a software developer for Kiersted Systems while completing his final semester.

Also a tradition in the college, the College Outstanding Student Award has provided an opportunity to celebrate the attributes of promising technology innovators. Considerations include notable academic achievement, a history of research activity (such as a special problems course or a grant-funded research project), and awareness of social and cultural concerns made evident by involvement in organized community service programs or activities.

Joe Compean was honored and received $1,000 for his achievements. His research collaborations have included, a solar charged watering system (spring 2015); knock detecting lock mechanism (spring 2014); and Arduino equalizer (fall 2013). His community service has included working as a volunteer with the Home Depot Homer Fund, and St. Leo Catholic Church. In the midst of financial challenges and the resulting time constraints, he remained dedicated and kept his focus on achieving academic excellence. His skillful balancing the demands of work and life and time management are admirable and commendable attributes - especially for a college student. Moreover, his work as an intern has impressed industry. As mentioned by his employer Oncur Electric, a manager expressed in a recommendation letter how Joe did an outstanding job and showed true integrity in all areas regarded by those who were in a position to evaluate his performance and his character while serving as summer intern.

The Department of Engineering Technology also honored Joe Compean for his high achievement as outstanding student in the department, which was accompanied by a $500 cash award.

Banner Bearers are the highest achieving students in each of the College of Technology departments. These students were privileged to lead graduating students into UH Commencement ceremonies:

  • John Baudoin, B.S. Construction Management, Construction Management Department
  • Jason Casey, B.S. Computer Information Systems, College of Technology
  • Joe Compean, B.S. Electrical Power Engineering Technology, Engineering Technology Department
  • Orlando Mejia, B.S. Organizational Leadership and Supervision, Information and Logistics Technology Department
  • Michelle Piech, B.S. Human Resource Development, Human Development and Consumer Sciences Department
  • Mydhilipurnima Palagummi, M.S. Engineering Technology, Graduate Studies

The entire College community is extremely proud of the accomplishments of all graduates and sincerely wishes the great success in their future endeavors.

Photos of the graduation reception are available on the College Facebook page: