Spring Commencement Honors Impressive Class of Graduates

Across all departments, the Cockrell School’s 2013 graduates exude strong leadership, creative thinking and academic excellence.

Across all departments, the Cockrell School’s 2013 graduates exude strong leadership, creative thinking and academic excellence.

On Friday, May 17, more than 1,000 engineering students walked across the stage to receive their diplomas at the Cockrell School of Engineering’s Spring 2013 Commencement Ceremony at the Frank Erwin Center.

The class of 2013 is made up of 405 graduate and 831 undergraduate students who reached academic success, connected with their peers, won prestigious awards, played major roles in research and innovated new ideas.

To mention just a few graduating students’ accomplishments:

-Chemical engineering senior Rebekah Scheuerle was awarded a Gates Cambridge Scholarship to fund graduate research focused on developing affordable, efficient and novel therapeutics to fight diseases such as cancer.

-Civil engineering major Rosaura Estrada, chemical engineering major Julie Fogarty and biomedical engineering major James Salazar received Texas Exes President’s Leadership Awards. The award is given to three seniors annually, with all of this year’s going to Cockrell School students.

-Cockrell School Ph.D. candidate Tushar Sharma and a teammate won UT Austin’s Idea to Product Competition for their research and design of a smart catheter with a thin, flexible pressure sensor that can measure blood pressure and blood flow in real-time.

-Undergraduate researcher Leon Dean worked with professors to co-author a paper published in Science highlighting their research that could lead to increases in computer memory.

At this year’s Honors Day, 628 engineering students were recognized for achieving academic excellence. The undergraduate, graduate and Ph.D. students graduating this spring are scholars, entrepreneurs, researchers and active participants in student life.

Some will enter graduate school in the fall, while the majority will go into the workforce in some type of engineering capacity. More than 90 percent of students who use the Cockrell School’s Engineering Career Assistance Center (ECAC) are either accepted into graduate programs across the country or find jobs at companies of all sizes. Of the entire class of graduates, typically around 65 percent of students go into industry and roughly 20 percent go to grad school.

Throughout the year, ECAC provides recruitment events, job-search and grad school counseling, information on internships, a career library and career development workshops on topics including salary negotiation and resume creation.

In addition to an exceptional 2013 class, this year’s commencement ceremony also honored some of the Cockrell School’s most accomplished alumni. The ceremony’s keynote was delivered by Shahid Ullah, a professional engineer and president of Afren Resources USA Inc. who has a passion for philanthropy and 30 years of experience in the international energy sector and investment banking. Ullah received his bachelor’s degree from the Department of Petroleum and Geosystems Engineering in 1982.

The commencement ceremony also recognized five alumni with the Distinguished Engineering Alumni Awards, the highest honors the Cockrell School bestows on its engineering alumni for being accomplished professionals, dedicated engineers and supporters of higher education.


Graduates and their families used #CockrellGrad13 to share their photos, pride and excitement at Cockrell School's Spring 2013 Commencement ceremony. View our story of the experiences shared online.

UT Features Engineering Grads

UT Austin published a feature on 2013 graduates across campus, including chemical engineering majors Leon Dean and Rebekah Scheuerle.

leon dean ut story

Read more and watch a video of Leon Dean.

rebekah scheuerle ut story

Read more and watch a video of Rebekah Scheuerle.