In its first year of operation, the Nuclear Engineering Graduate Student Assembly (NEGSA) managed to win the Graduate Student Organization of the Year Award from UT’s Center for Student Engagement.
NEGSA currently has about 50 members and meets monthly.
“Any of NE’s graduate students are free to join,” said NEGSA’s president, Tyler Steiner, who also founded the organization in 2019 to make sure graduate students could help in shaping the department. “NEGSA seeks to collectively give a voice to our grad students and improve our department though collaboration and new perspectives.”
The organization serves as a forum to empower graduate students to initiate and engage in discussions, events, and programs to better the nuclear engineering department and its graduate students. In addition to serving as a resource through which grad students can share their thoughts with the department, NEGSA also offers the ability for more communication between grad students themselves, helping build an improved community.
Steiner said that the success of NEGSA’s first year would not have been possible without the executive board, including vice president Mairead Montague, treasurer Edward Duchnowski, and public relations chair Emily Hutchins.
In its first year, the group managed to:
- Establish an NE graduate student orientation;
- Create a form and procedure for students to request colloquium speakers;
- Welcome new spring semester graduate students;
- Significantly revamp recruiting efforts;
- Organize and lead several outreach events to local schools, food pantries, etc.
Steiner says that NEGSA offers a meeting place for anyone interested to get together and simply talk.
“What we communicate about is entirely up to the members,” he said. “If they just come to the assembly to meet people and hang out, great. If they come to the meetings with a dozen of issues they’d like to tackle, great. It is very open-ended.”