ASU graduate helps fellow students find success


May 2, 2019

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of profiles for spring 2019 commencement.

Brianna Chavez has demonstrated the defining qualities of a great leader by seizing every opportunity for personal and professional growth in Arizona State University’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. portrait of Brianna Chavez Brianna Chavez. Download Full Image

“I’m eternally grateful to the university for providing me with infinite opportunities to get involved,” said Chavez, an industrial engineering major with a minor in global health. “I’ve been impacted equally by the people and experiences brought to me by the Fulton Schools.”

As an out-of-state student who knew no one on campus, Chavez appreciated the Fulton Schools’ commitment to building a sense of camaraderie among students through E2, peer mentors and student organizations. She found a group of friends and learned from peer mentors who guided her toward leadership positions, internships and eventually an offer for her dream job.

“I felt — and still feel — an urgent call to pay forward the time and effort my mentors have poured into me,” said Chavez, who is graduating with honors from Barrett, The Honors College.

During her first year at ASU, Chavez became a member of Engineers Without Borders, Latinos in Science and Engineering (MAES) and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers.

She served as an international project lead in Engineers Without Borders, which led to her election as student chapter president. She coordinated two trips to Pune, India, where students assessed problems with water shortages and contamination and developed solutions for those needs. As president, she applied her industrial engineering mindset to improve internal chapter processes.

Chavez has also served as a peer mentor, a camp counselor at E2, an undergraduate research assistant and an undergraduate teaching assistant. More recently, she became a mentor for Young Engineers Shape the World and served as a panelist for Intel’s Hermanas: Diseña Tu Futuro. These initiatives inspire young girls to pursue careers in science and engineering through engagement and mentorship. 

“The most rewarding part of my ASU experience has been to watch students I have mentored succeed in their own goals,” said Chavez.

In addition to her extracurricular activities, Chavez found the time to intern at Goldman Sachs, AXON and W. L. Gore and Associates, and to study abroad in London and Brisbane, Australia.

After graduation, Chavez will enter the Operations Leadership Development Program at Lockheed Martin, an aerospace and defense company. She’d also like to earn a master’s degree.

“My passions lie in the public sector,” said Chavez. “I hope to apply my engineering skills to initiatives and organizations that improve public health and welfare.”

Hometown: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Chavez's favorites

TV show: "Bob’s Burgers"
Hobbies: Reading true crime fiction, cooking new dishes, making ceramic pottery.
Sport: "I’ve always loved soccer. I cannot be near a soccer ball without spending a few minutes juggling."
Book: “Sacred Rice: An Ethnography of Identity, Environment, and Development in Rural West Africa” by Joanna Davidson
Geeky possession: "I own several graphic prints ranging in theme from Star Wars to the Kill Bill movies."

Read about other exceptional graduates of the Fulton Schools’ spring 2019 class.

Amanda Stoneman

Science Writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

480-727-5622

Outstanding graduate gains respect for construction industry


May 2, 2019

Editor’s note: This is part of a series of profiles for spring 2019 commencement.

Nearly 15 years ago, Jonathan Thomas Lyle dropped out of high school and didn’t know what the future had in store for him. He never thought he would spend 10 years in the Army and later be graduating with honors from Arizona State University. His future, though, turned out better than he could have expected. Portrait of Jonathan Thomas Lyle Jonathan Lyle. Download Full Image

“My entire time at the university has been extremely memorable and rewarding,” said Lyle, who is graduating with a bachelor’s degree in construction management from ASU’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. “I’ve been grabbing hold of every opportunity that comes my way and doing everything to the utmost of my abilities.”

Lyle was drawn to the quality of the construction management program as well as the Del E. Webb School of Construction, which is housed within the School of Sustainable Engineering and the Built Environment, one of the six Fulton Schools. He also believed the mandatory internship component in the curriculum was important for his career development.

During the first year of his program, Lyle helped renovate the Sun Devil Stadium as an intern with Suntec Concrete, a commercial concrete contractor in Phoenix, Arizona.

“Nothing matches the knowledge gained by physically doing the work you plan to do. It has been awesome to go to games and see parts of structural concrete I helped build,” he said, adding that is when he knew he’d chosen the right field to pursue.

Lyle joined several student organizations to make sure he didn’t miss a single opportunity. He served as president of the student chapter of the American Concrete Institute, captained five teams for international competitions hosted by the national chapter of the American Concrete Institute and was founding treasurer of the Fulton Student Veteran Organization, among others.

His notable contributions include founding Operation Ramp-Up, a charity event that provides ADA mobility ramps to disabled veterans across the Valley, and winning a third-place trophy in concrete solutions at the 2018 Associated Schools of Construction Regions 6 & 7 competition.

After graduation, Lyle will be working as a project engineer in the self-perform concrete division of McCarthy Building Companies, a national construction company.

“I learned and gained a higher respect for the entire construction industry,” said Lyle. “I came out of ASU with a true passion for my future career.” 

Hometown: Albuquerque, New Mexico

Lyle's favorites:

Movie: "Anchorman"
TV show: Any nature documentary
Hobbies: His dogs, snowboarding, camping/hunting
Author: Chuck Palahniuk
Band/performer: Notorious BIG, The Used, almost anything country

Read about other exceptional graduates of the Fulton Schools’ spring 2019 class.

Amanda Stoneman

Science Writer, Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering

480-727-5622