A couple of interesting initiatives have come across the desk lately, featuring engineering outreach to students. The earlier program had to do with apprenticeships. This time, the engineers at Smith Seckman Reid (Nashville) really get into the school spirit.

What better way to establish relationships with tomorrow's engineers, and prepare them for the field, than to team-teach a course?

What a great idea. Do you know of other efforts like this? Here's the full scoop:

Members of the Smith Seckman Reid, Inc. (SSR) team will enter a classroom Aug. 29 in Vanderbilt University’s School of Engineering to offer expertise to students enrolled in a course titled Electrical, Mechanical Systems in Building & Leadership in Environmental Engineering and Design (LEED), a benchmark system designed by the U.S. Green Building Council.

Rob Barrick is the instructor for CE 299, a civil engineering special topics course this fall, which is taken mainly by graduate students in the School’s construction management program. He will be assisted by several SSR employees including Ed Hale, Ron Holdaway, Paul McCown, Jamie Qualk, John Ross, Clay Seckman, and Rick Wood.

“We are extremely excited to instruct this engineering class,” said Barrick. “This serves as a great opportunity for SSR to partner with a leading educational institution and a strong engineering school as well as with future members of Nashville’s engineering community.”

The first half of the course will focus on LEED curriculum and students will have the opportunity at midterm to take the official U.S. Green Building Council exam to become LEED certified. The remainder of the course will focus on mechanical and electrical engineering principles.

“The course is designed to bridge the gap between the realities that confront both engineering and construction professionals,” said Sanjiv Gokhale, Vanderbilt professor of civil and environmental engineering.

“When SSR, a company that ranks 5th on Building Design and Construction magazine’s list of the nation’s top 50 design engineering firms, agreed to assist with designing the course syllabus and later to conducting the class, it was clearly that this would be a tremendous opportunity for our students,” Gokhale said.

After the first class this week at the School of Engineering, students will meet in SSR’s Nashville offices for the remainder of the semester.