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Leading the Way: Jessica Burk

More than 100 electrical and computer engineering undergraduate students will be among the 10,400 who will earn degrees – the largest spring quarter graduating class ever – during the final quarter commencement exercises at Ohio State on Sunday, June 10, 2012. Some ECE graduates will continue their education, while others will enter the workforce. Each of these students has a unique story; join us as we highlight a few of them over the next week.

After graduation Jessica Burk plans to work at GE Lighting in Cleveland and take part in the company’s leadership training program, but she is already a leader here at Ohio State.

As co-president of IEEE @ Ohio State, Burk lead the organization of the IEEE Region 2 Student Activities Conference. The conference brought approximately 300 students and advisors from 25 colleges and universities to campus to meet and engage in leadership training, student paper competitions, robotics competitions and other competitive events. 

Her leadership of IEEE and the conference earned Burk the GE Leadership Award from the Ohio State Women in Engineering program and an IEEE Service Award from the IEEE Columbus Chapter. IEEE’s faculty advisor, Professor Paul Berger, describes Burk as “the peak of efficiency, effectiveness, politeness and manners.”

Burk has also been active in the Women in Engineering peer mentor program, WiE CONNECT and was an E-Council representative for Eta Kappa Nu (HKN). In addition, she completed two internships with Rockwell Automation and three internships with GE Lighting during her time at Ohio State.

She also hopes to pursue a master’s degree in electrical and computer engineering. 

Burk’s interest in engineering was piqued at an early age. 

“I remember in fifth grade that my dad would say that I should be an engineer because I was good at math and science,” she says. “I probably wasn't convinced about it until I was in high school. Math and science classes were my favorite and during my senior year my high school had an engineering class for the first time. We did a lot of fun projects and took several trips to engineering companies around the area.”

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