Every end of semester, the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers puts on a typically small membership appreciation banquet as a thank you to its members, a cheer to the end of the semester, and as a way to recognize certain members in SHPE. These recognized members really embraced one of the five pillars of SHPE: academic development, professional development, chapter development, leadership development, and community outreach.
By most accounts, the membership banquet is considered a pretty small affair. My first banquet took place in a booked room in Grace Ford Salvatori hall and pasta was served on paper plates with plastic utensils. While my first membership appreciation banquet will always be super memorable based solely on the fact that I had received the leadership development award that semester, it still felt totally understandable to why some members might choose to skip out on event that is exclusively catered to them.
Thus, the membership committee got to work. We began planning for a grander banquet, this time taking place in the Tutor Campus Center ballroom. We rented utensils, received deliveries for food, sent out invitations to corporate sponsors, and invited faculty in Viterbi to speak our new and improved (and very ambitious) banquet.
After many hours of grueling set up, organization, decoration, and ultimate clean up, I’m proud to report that the new and improved membership banquet was a huge success! We had great pasta delivered from the nearby Pasta Roma , turnout was amazing, and we had great speakers such as Dean Yortsos and Dean Jones! Not to mention, the after awards dance party was extremely fun, with great people and great music all around.
The benefit in participating in the planning of events such as these (besides the obvious emotional fulfillment of seeing something you’ve put so much effort into finally bloom in fruition) is that they are stark reminders of the power of the team. It would have been impossible for a single person to have been able to coordinate and take care of all the tasks necessary to pull off an event of this scale. The membership committee (the committee I sit on in SHPE) all had to communicate effectively and take responsibility for each our respective tasks in order for the event to be executed smoothly. Such skills will be invaluable in almost any field, especially in engineering. Many projects worth pursuing will always be impossible without a team behind you and I’m glad to think of the SHPE membership committee as a team I can always count on!