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Immersion Experiences Program

CCEE’s Immersion Experiences Program exposes students to real-world civil, construction, and environmental engineering projects that expand education beyond the confines of a classroom.

Here’s HOW it works:

  • CCEE undergraduate students — and occasionally graduate students — visit local engineering project sites on immersion experiences once a month over the course of the academic year. Site visit have included everything from mixed-use developments to waste-treatment facilities to highway interchanges.
  • Students are tasked with solving a real-world problem the project engineers faced, tour the project site, and are given the opportunity to chat with the engineering firm involved.
  • Participants from the host firm ​​evaluate and critique the analysis work the students did, which allows the students to gain experiential knowledge about how what they learn in the classroom is applied in the real world.

“There are three pieces to the program: You cast a problem-solving initiative or an analysis that you want the students to focus on. It could be analysis of a beam, design of a waste treatment facility, design of a building, construction, staging, etc. The students do preparatory work to think about that problem and how it would be addressed and what information they would need to have to address the problem. Then they go to the real project site and interact with the host firm to learn about how that problem was addressed in the context of the actual project.” — Dr. George List, Immersion Experiences Program Coordinator

Here’s WHY it works:

  • The program exposes students to the practice of civil engineering through real-world projects.
  • It empowers alumni to give back through work examples.
  • The program is voluntary, and students must be accepted for participation as there are a limited number of spaces available. 
  • Venues based on all the major sub-disciplines.

“As an environmental engineering student who is interested in water resources, I’ve known from class that I enjoy chemistry, hydraulics, and understanding processes. But it’s a completely different feeling to visit a project site and see large-scale equipment being used, the number of people working together, and the scheduling, technology, and materials behind everything. Having this experience as a first-year, before I had an internship or took any higher-level courses, was invaluable because it gave me things to talk about and exposed me to different career options.” — Ellie Nir, environmental engineering student

Value for company hosts:

  • Companies get the opportunity to interact with current students.
  • Employees can showcase their firms.
  • Hosts have the chance to interview potential future employees — aka CCEE students.

“The Immersion Experience provides students an opportunity to learn tangible foundational concepts through the experience of working with practicing professionals. This is the kind of working and learning that helped me and carried with me as I started my career.” — Mike Creed, founder, former CEO, McKim & Creed

Events for 2023-24:

  • Zia lecturer interview
  • North Hills Expansion Project (Brasfield & Gorrie)
  • Waste Pump Station (Highfill)
  • Constructed Facilities Lab (CCEE)
  • Fenton Drainage System (McAdams)
  • The Spark Steel Structure Design (Lynch Mykins)

I wanted to be able to apply my skills and gain experience with real-life engineering problem-solving. This program merges what you learn in class with real world application. It teaches you the value of experience by pointing out areas where we’re not fully informed by classroom learning. I’ve learned a lot about what it looks like to do engineering in real time. I’ve learned it’s a lot of problem solving that brings together many aspects of the education I’m receiving. — Lindsay Bailey, civil engineering student


For additional feedback and questions contact: (919-809-4207) (919-515-8038)