For Immediate Release
March 17, 2017

Contact: Amy Hewes
805-756-6402; ahewes@calpoly.edu

Cal Poly Society of Women Engineers Names Five Outstanding Members

SAN LUIS OBISPO — Five students from Cal Poly’s College of Engineering recently received awards as Outstanding Women in Engineering from the Cal Poly Society of Women Engineers.

The awards were given at SWE’s annual Evening With Industry held Jan. 26 at the Avila Beach Golf Resort. The event attracted 350 students, faculty, staff and industry representatives.

In addition to the five honorees, 45 student scholarships totaling $50,500 were awarded by Abbott, George and Marcelle Ansolabehere; Applied Materials; Boeing Co.; Chevron Corp.; Fluor Corp.; the Forbes family; LAM Research; Maxim Integrated; Mazzetti; NetApp Inc.; Parker-Hannifin Aerospace; Susie Penner; Phillips 66; Solar Turbines; Southern California Edison; Syska Hennessy Group; Trane Inc.; Varian Medical Systems; SWE Central Coast Region; and the SWE Past President Scholarship.

The Outstanding Women in Engineering awardees were chosen based on faculty recommendations, demonstrated leadership, related work experience and grade point average. Recipients included:

Kate Cuddington (Boulder, Colo.), an architectural engineering senior, led a trip to Nepal last summer. The group, all members of the Cal Poly chapter of Structural Engineering Students for Humanity (SESH), provides seismic rehabilitation and retrofits in areas of the world that lack the resources and expertise to respond to earthquakes or similar disasters. “Structural engineering is a field where I can help improve individual lives and communities affected by disaster,” said Cuddington. In addition to her involvement with SESH, Cuddington has held top positions in the Cal Poly Structural Engineering Association of California, participated in a student exchange program in Lithuania and served as president of the College of Architectural and Environmental Design’s student ambassador program.

Katie Davis (Bellingham, Wash.), a computer science graduate student, was in Malta last summer leading a Cal Poly team on an international research project to help map coastal shipwrecks and develop new technology for marine archaeology. Originally a math major, Davis chose to minor in computer science and subsequently “fell in love” with the discipline. “Katie’s thirst for technical mastery has made her an outstanding student,” said Computer Science Professor Zoë Wood. “Her strong academics led to two internships with Apple and another with Facebook.” As a research assistant to Wood, Davis helped develop a curriculum for fifth-grade students that has resulted in hundreds of San Luis Obispo County 10- and 11-year-olds being exposed to basic computer programming over the last three years.

Ashley Kim (Irvine, Calif.), a civil engineering graduate student specializing in transportation, is president of the award-winning Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE) student chapter. Her projects in the field include a six-minute video, “A Guide For Bicycling Around Cal Poly,” a term paper that focused on a set of myths about transportation planning, and a team proposal for a portion of Higuera Street in San Luis Obispo. Kim was honored by the ITE Western District in 2016 as the Outstanding Undergraduate and was part of Cal Poly’s championship Traffic Bowl quiz team. She is also active in the Mustang Marching Band as an alto saxophonist, the College of Engineering Ambassadors and the Women’s Transportation Seminar, an international organization dedicated to the professional advancement of women in transportation.

Myra Lukens (Vancouver, Wash.), a computer science senior, has been active throughout campus. In her first year, she was elected to the board of directors of ASI, the university’s student government organization, and was appointed vice chair the following year. As a university student ambassador, or Poly Rep, she has represented Cal Poly at alumni and industry events. Lukens has also been dedicated to WISH (Women Involved in Software and Hardware), a group for female computing majors, serving as the organization’s secretary, treasurer and vice president. “Through my WISH involvement and by personal example, I have made a significant effort to rectify the gender gap in computing and create an inclusive community on campus and beyond,” said Lukens. Next fall, Lukens will participate in a Cal Poly study abroad program at the Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm.

Kristen Temby (Morro Bay, Calif.), a biomedical major, is the student manager, researcher and team leader for Cal Poly’s Tissue Engineering Laboratory. Temnyk’s leading role in a diabetic blood vessel project won her a yearlong contract as a research assistant leader from Medtronic Neurovascular. The work caught the eye of a research group at Mayo Clinic, which resulted in Cal Poly becoming a part of a large National Institutes of Health grant in collaboration with Mayo Clinic. Temnyk’s numerous internships have included research work at UC San Francisco and Medtronic’s Interventional Therapies. Her research has been published at Cal Poly and at UC San Francisco, where she made significant contributions to a work on bone regeneration for bone fracture repair.


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