Senior Ariel Dornisch Named GSPE Engineering Student of the Year

Ariel Dornisch

MACON – Mercer University senior Ariel Dornisch was recently named Georgia Society of Professional Engineers (GSPE) Engineering Student of the Year.

GSPE is the leading state organization that promotes the engineering profession to protect public health, safety and welfare. Each year the organization honors the engineers, companies and agencies, volunteers and students who have made outstanding contributions to engineering. This year’s awards will be presented March 14 in Atlanta.

“I am absolutely honored to be receiving this reward,” Dornisch said. “I can’t thank ASCE enough for supporting me, Mercer for having such talented and supportive engineering professors without whom I never would have achieved this honor, and my parents for being there for me. I feel this award is just the beginning, and I can’t wait to see what else I am able to accomplish in the future.”

Dornisch, an environmental engineering major and technical communication minor from Charleston, South Carolina, is participating in Mercer’s 4+1 Integrated Master of Science Program, which she plans to complete in May 2021. Upon earning her master’s degree, she intends to pursue a career designing systems that make people’s lives better.

“As I have learned, a large part of being a civil and environmental engineer is designing things that people may not often think about but are an essential part of everyday life,” she said. “Making differences in these small ways will bring me purpose by making a positive change in the world.”

Dornisch is a founding member and president of Mercer’s chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers, vice president of membership experience for Alpha Gamma Delta sorority, a mentor with Leadership Mercer mentor and a member of Order of Omega and Tau Beta Pi honor societies.

Her work has been published in the GEHA Journal by the Georgia Environmental Health Association and presented at the Air and Waste Management Association’s 112th Annual Conference and Exhibition in Québec City, Canada.

Currently, Dornisch is conducting research on DustDuino, a project by Mercer students to develop a low-cost airborne particulate matter monitoring device that can be used to collect indoor air pollution data.

“We are delighted that the GSPE selected Ariel as its Engineering Student of the Year,” said Dr. Laura Lackey, dean and Georgia Kaolin Chair of Engineering. “Ariel is a committed student whose extensive involvement and leadership in career-centered, social justice-focused research projects make her an ideal recipient for this prestigious award.”

About the School of Engineering

Mercer University’s School of Engineering, founded in 1985, offers innovative and academically challenging programs that provide students with a comprehensive education, featuring a solid foundation in mathematics and sciences, a core engineering curriculum, a range of courses in engineering specialties and a strong emphasis on communication technologies. The School is consistently ranked by U.S. News and World Report as one of the top three master’s-degree-level engineering schools in the Southeast. Known for its breadth of instruction in its undergraduate program and its five-year joint bachelor’s and master’s degree program, the School combines technical education with hands-on laboratory experience. Mercer engineers can look forward to joining fellow alumni in companies such as Robins Air Force Base, Mercer Engineering Research Center, Northrop Grumman, Georgia Power, Manhattan Associates and Gulfstream Aerospace.