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Citadel News Service
8 Jun 2015

Engineering graduates in high demand in S.C. and beyond

Expanding technology and aging workforce makes engineering one of America’s hottest jobs

Some of the highest-paying college majors are in engineering fields and as a college major choice, engineering beat out almost everything else in 2014. That’s according to Forbes, CNN Money and Business Insider. The economic modeling group providing the Forbes data also reports that 25 percent of the engineering workforce is aged 55 and older, increasing the need for new engineers.

Recent graduates from The Citadel School of Engineering are seeing the rewards of their dedication to the expanding industry through exciting new jobs in civilian and military sectors where the need for top talent is growing.

“The (military) service does fascinating research with the latest technology out there,” said Air Force Chief Scientist Mica Endsley in a recent Air Force Times article. “We need more people who really understand science and engineering to keep us moving along the tracks.”

More than twenty civil and electrical engineering 2015 graduates are already providing support as military officers in a wide range of duties in all U.S. service branches, as well as one serving in the Taiwanese Air Force. Many received prestigious commendations upon commissioning, including Ensign Jason Shea, who is now a Submarine Warfare Officer. He attended The Citadel as an active-duty student and received the Navy’s top engineering award, the National Armed Forces Communications and Electronics Association Award.

It read, “…as such, he is the highest ranked student in the Electrical or Communication science discipline among the graduating classes of all NROTC units, nationwide, which includes 62 commands at 166 Colleges & Universities.”

In the private sector, Jared Chryostom started his job as an Engineer I with Collins Engineers, Inc., before graduating summa cum laude with a civil and environmental engineering degree. He attended The Citadel Graduate College’s Evening Undergraduate Studies (EUGS) program. Now he can pursue his career goals while still living in his hometown of Folly Beach, South Carolina.

“Collins Engineers hired me as an intern in 2014 after reaching out to The Citadel for recommendations. They kept me on, and then offered me an Engineer I, full-time position, which started six months before graduation,” said Chryostom. “It’s amazing to be with such a respected, international corporation already. I am doing things like helping with the regular inspections of the Ravenel Bridge in Charleston − things that I would actually pay to get to do.”

After a highly competitive selection process, another Citadel EUGS electrical engineering graduate, Jairo Diaz-Jimenez was chosen for Boeing’s rotational training which will expose him to all areas and locations during his first two years to accelerate him along the corporate structure.

“Many transition seamlessly into one of the many growing enterprises right here in the Lowcountry such as Boeing, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR), and soon, Volvo,” said the Dean of The Citadel School of Engineering, Ronald W. Welch, Ph.D., PE. Welch says out of the almost 70 School of Engineering 2015 graduates, 100 percent will be employed as engineers or pursuing advanced degrees by August.

“South Carolina has a rapidly growing manufacturing base, which is good news to be sure,” said Lonnie Carter, president and CEO of Santee Cooper and chairman of the Charleston Regional Development Alliance. “Manufacturers need a diverse workforce, including engineers. I see this across the electric industry, and also in my work with the Charleston Regional Development Alliance. It is critically important that our state colleges and universities, including my alma mater, continue to build programs that will graduate professional engineers who can lead these manufacturers in a global marketplace.” 

Advanced studies scholarships and industry awards are also propelling The Citadel’s engineering students toward their goals. For example, two former cadets earned highly coveted doctoral slots at Georgia Tech. Veteran student Erik Eisnach is heading to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and another is attending the University of South Carolina School of Law.

“I will be working with the head of the University of Florida’s (UF) mechanical and aerospace engineering department on a long-term research project,” said Logan Hester. “We will be researching techniques to capture and store solar energy when the sun isn’t out. I am so excited and very grateful for this opportunity.”

Hester was the South Carolina Corps of Cadets Class of 2015 Regimental Public Affairs Officer and his Ph.D. studies at UF are fully-funded.

The Citadel School of Engineering is the fifth oldest in the nation and is ranked in the top 25 nationally by U.S. News and World Report. It offers undergraduate programs in civil and environmental engineering, electrical and computer engineering and mechanical engineering. A Master of Science in Project management is also available through The Citadel Graduate College, with technical electives in civil engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, leadership, program management, technical project management and systems engineering management. Graduate certificates can be earned for civil engineering, electrical engineering, mechanical engineering, systems engineering management, technical project management and technical program management. For more information, please call (843)-953-6499 or email

Achieving excellence in the education and development of principled leaders
Media Contact:
Kim Keelor-Parker
(843) 953-2155

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