PEEC is a living learning community program for first-year engineering students in the Seaver College of Science and Engineering. Students in the PEEC program are enrolled in four linked courses taught by faculty members from the Seaver College and the Bellarmine College of Liberal Arts. The linked courses, along with the residential living component and other co-curricular experiences provided for the students in the program, are designed to create a fully integrated learning experience and further the student’s interest and success in pursuing careers in the engineering disciplines. Examples of co-curricular programs that will be offered to PEEC participants are an engineering-oriented “Explore Los Angeles Program” and community based course projects.
The Engineering Living Learning Community is designed for first year Engineer students. Participants in this community will receive support and guidance in the classroom as well as their living community. This community is housed on the first floor of Del Rey South.
The PEEC classroom environment will differ from a traditional lecture-based course. While the content is the same as the standard curriculum, the students will attend most classes together or in subgroups. This provides the opportunity for students to work on multi- and interdisciplinary projects under the direct guidance of professors in engineering, chemistry, mathematics, and English. In addition, all PEEC students will be enrolled in a workshop course designed to help students navigate challenges and explore the opportunities for first year engineering students. The PEEC curricular and co-curricular activities will be enhanced by the intensive use of technology. The focus of these technology-rich and interdisciplinary courses will be engineering design and analysis. Students will learn engineering by doing engineering and learn engineering communication by talking and writing about engineering.
The ENGR 190 course will run in the spring semester as a continuation of the fall ENGR 100 course. The ENGR 100 and 190 courses hold the objective to provide freshmen engineering students with insight and tools required for solving engineering analysis and design problems. A key element of the courses is a community-based project where teams of students design, build, and analyze a project in collaboration with non-profit outreach oriented agencies in the Los Angeles area. In addition, the courses will serve as an introduction to areas of study and career opportunities within the engineering disciplines. They will also assist in acquiring the skills and information necessary to becoming successful engineering students at LMU.
Residence Hall Experience
All students enrolled in PEEC will live in the living-learning community designated for them in Del Rey South. Living in the community will allow students to build close relationships and enable them to learn together and from one another as they experience the challenging integrated coursework especially designed for them. The community will be staffed with two resident advisers (RAs) who are engineering students. The RAs will be responsible for building community on the floor and planning activities and programs for the residents. In addition, they will accompany the students on the “Explore Los Angeles” trips and be available on the floor as an academic resource.
Community Based Experience
The week before fall semester begins, all students enrolled in PEEC will participate in a pre-college experience to help them become acquainted with one another, the PEEC faculty, LMU, and the Los Angeles area. The students will have an opportunity to get settled into their community a day before the majority of new students arrive, which will allow them to begin to form bonds and friendships prior to tackling the challenging, yet rewarding, coursework that lies ahead. The program started off in the evening on Thursday, August 26th with a welcome and get acquainted bonfire and BBQ at Dockweiler State Beach. The following day, the students attended a field trip to JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory). In addition to this pre-college experience, there will be other trips throughout the year to some of Los Angeles’ well-known engineering sites and local areas of scientific and technological interest.
Meet the Staff
PEEC Academic Coordinator, Jeremy Pal
Dr. Jeremy Pal, an Associate Professor in Civil Engineering at LMU, is looking forward to being involved with PEEC this year. An alum of LMU, Dr. Pal also received his M.S. and Ph.D. in Civil Engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). He has written numerous peer-reviewed research papers and co-organized several internationally recognized conferences. Prior to joining the LMU faculty in 2001, Dr. Pal worked for the International Centre for Theoretical Physics, an agency that operates under two United Nations Agencies in Trieste, Italy with the mission to foster the growth of research in developing nations. His research interests are in hydro-climatology; water resources; agriculture; flood and drought; sustainable development; climate prediction, change and variability; and earth system modeling.
Resident Director for Del Rey South, Zachary Helsper
Zach Helsper is in his first year as Resident Director at LMU. He received his B.A. in Politics from University of California, Santa Cruz (UCSC) in 2007 where he was involved as an RA as well as other student leadership opportunities. Upon graduation he attended the University of Southern California (USC) where he received his M.Ed. in Postsecondary Administration and Student Affairs. While at USC, Zach worked in Residential Education as a Residence Coordinator and in Student Support and Advocacy as a crisis manager. Upon graduation Zach moved to Ithaca, New York to work as a Residence Hall Director at Cornell University overseeing Clara Dickson Hall, the largest residence hall in the Ivy League. Zach is very excited to be back in his native Los Angeles and looks forward to making a home here at LMU!
PEEC Resident Advisor, Ruby Ann Felten
Ruby is entering her third year at LMU and is excited to be a part of PEEC again. She had such a great time living in the PEEC community her first year, she looks forward to sharing her experience with freshmen and help them get acclimated to LMU. Ruby is a Civil Engineering major and has a lifelong goal to save trees. To stay balanced and relaxed at LMU, Ruby enjoys working on crafts and projects, including sewing. A native to Southern California, she enjoys everything Los Angeles has to offer. Ruby is originally from Covina, California, which is a short drive to Raging Waters waterpark! This is Ruby’s first year as an RA for PEEC.
PEEC Resident Adviser, Sam Evans
Sam is entering his fourth year at LMU and is excited to graduate soon and join the real world! He is studying electrical engineering and has a minor in mathematics, which is quite challenging but he is enjoying every minute of it. Sam is an active member of the community going to many athletic and club sporting events, while working as a math tutor at LMU (if you need help in calculus let him know!). He played lacrosse in high school and loves to shoot and throw the ball in his free time, as well as playing basketball, soccer, or volleyball around campus. Sam loves balancing his time on campus with exploring the beautiful city of Los Angeles by visiting Santa Monica, going to sporting events, or going into the city with his girlfriend Caitlin. He is from Pleasant Hill, California which is in the bay area and is a loyal fan of the Raiders, A’s, Warriors and Sharks! This is Sam’s second year as an RA and he can’t wait to get to know you.
For further information
For more information, please contact Dr. Jeremy Pal, or Zachary Helsper, Resident Director for Del Rey South.