May 10, 2023
Wrapping up its first year of being an active student organization, Mizzou’s chapter of the Society of Asian Scientists and Engineers (SASE) is looking forward to expanding programming and reaching out to more students in the Fall.
“We started Mizzou SASE this year in hopes of helping Asian-American scientists and engineers connect with educational and professional opportunities,” said Andrew Chang, chapter president. “We also just wanted to create a fun, welcoming community in the College of Engineering for anyone — not only Asians.”
This past year, Mizzou SASE has hosted events such as a Lunar New Year celebration, co-hosted by Mizzou Engineering Student Council, a dry ice rocket workshop and an egg drop competition. They also brought in a Two Sigma software engineer, Timothy Zhu, to discuss how he defines success and encourage students to take lead in developing a professional career.
“Since we’re new, we’re still figuring out our ‘business model’ and what events we can do consistently,” said Chang, a computer science student. “Now that we’re somewhat established though, we plan on bringing more companies to Mizzou and focusing on career-building next year.”
The group’s organizers were inspired to launch a chapter of SASE at Mizzou after seeing the success of other national organizations’ Mizzou chapters and how they help students.
“Last year, my friends and I saw how the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) and the Society of Hispanic Professional Engineers (SHPE) were helping the Black and Hispanic communities, but there was nothing like that for Asian students,” Chang said.
Dhruv Agarwal, Mizzou SASE Treasurer and computer science student, agreed.
“There was a clear need for an organization like SASE,” he said.
In addition to hosting events, Mizzou SASE provides resources for students to grow professionally, including presentations and opportunities to gain advice from industry professionals. Students involved have the opportunity to attend national and regional conferences with the chapter, where they can network with other students and future employers.
“Asian American engineers and scientists can come in and find an inclusive community that supports their goals, whether it be related to their career or personal lives,” Agarwal said. “SASE is special because we’re so tightly knit, all our members know each other, and everyone is close with each other.”
Mizzou SASE will return in the fall to continue providing a space for Asian American students and others who want to connect with the Asian engineering community.
“Students should join to make friends with students who are like-minded and have similar passions and interests,” Agarwal said. “Along with all the opportunities for career advancement, it is a great place to meet new people and make lifelong friends.”
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