Alumni Stay Connected to POETS and Give Back After Graduation

Achievement date: 

Following the start of a STEM outreach team in 2018, connections with graduates have helped develop a culture of giving back at the Center for Power Optimization of Electro-Thermal System (POETS), an NSF-funded Engineering Research Center (ERC) based at the University of Illinois.


POETS graduates stay involved with the Center after leaving campus, staying involved in the STEM outreach activities that help develop future scientists and POETS researchers.


The mission of the STEM Outreach Team is to increase opportunities available to POETS graduate students and post-docs. The organization seeks to promote leadership, communication, and teaching skills among participants, and strives to encourage personal connections among the students across the center.

Recent examples include graduates currently employed by the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Northrup Grumman volunteering as panelists on POETS’ new web series, “Meet a STEM Superhero!”. Another is five graduates representing academia, government, and industry serving on a panel at the 2020 POETS annual meeting, “Preparing for Job Search.”