Diversity, High performance & sustainability, Community involvement
Two of our own co-found the Society of Aspiring Minority Engineers
Earlier this year, two of Pepper’s young professionals, Project Engineer Elijah Reid and Intern Aaron Lott, co-founded the Society of Aspiring Minority Engineers (SAME). In collaboration with other members of the AEC community, SAME’s mission is to mentor minority high school seniors and college students from poverty stricken neighborhoods within Indianapolis through engineering and related trade school programs.
Mentors offer a full spectrum of support including resume building workshops, interview preparation sessions and networking opportunities. Additionally, and perhaps most notably, SAME offers a support system to mentees as they navigate through these demanding programs.
Shown left to right in the photo above are Aaron Lott, Bryan Fields, SAME’s Professional Development Director, Elijah Reid, Taheed Moore, SAME’s Chief Financial Officer, and Charlie Smith a Project Director at Pepper Construction in Indianapolis. Left to right in the banner image at the top of the page are Pepper Project Manager Anthony White, Elijiah Reed and Taheed Moore.
Committing to an engineering program is very rigorous and, without a support system, it is even more demanding. To me, leadership is about taking action and creating a better world for those around you. SAME can be your support system as you navigate your college experience. I’m extremely proud of all our applicants.
The Reid Foundation Scholarship
This fall, the foundation awarded two scholarships. One recipient, Jonathon Gonzalez, will be studying engineering software and the other, Joshua Jones, is embarking on an electrical engineering journey. Jonathon and Joshua will be able to use the granted funds towards tuition, school supplies and professional attire.
SAME recently celebrated award recipients and a promising future with a wine tasting fundraiser hosted by Peace Water Winery. Monetary and professional attire donations were collected.
The financial aid process for immigrants is cumbersome. As an international student I don’t qualify for in-state tuition, so I have to rely on private scholarships. The Reid Foundation is helping me cover housing and meal-plan expenses and giving me the opportunity to study web and app development.
Walking the walk
Elijah and Aaron’s ambitions are a testament to one of Pepper’s core values – diversity. As we pursue our mission to improve quality of life through the built world, we feel a great responsibility to foster diversity, equity and inclusion throughout our organization and our industry.
This whole endeavor is amazing. We’re proud to support SAME’s mission, look forward to seeing their progress, and eventually tracking their mentees as they fill our talent pipeline.