At LSU, you will have access to acclaimed professors—including Nobel Laureates, Guggenheim Fellows, MacArthur Geniuses, National Academies of Sciences and Engineering members, and Senior Wharton Fellows. The relationships you form here will be lasting and impactful, just like that of mechanical engineering senior Darria Carter and Assistant Dean Jada Lewis.
When Darria decided to come to LSU, she knew that earning a degree in mechanical engineering could be tough. In her moments of doubt, she would reach out to her mentor Dean Lewis, chair of the National Society of Black Engineers, who always guided her back to the fact that she had the knowledge, drive, and spirit to thrive in engineering. This is the foundation of Dean Lewis’s relationships with students: knowing all students outside of the classroom and giving them the opportunity to do the same with her so that they can connect and find common ground. Darria is on track to graduate soon and credits her mentor and their lasting connection for a significant portion of her success.
Joining the LSU community ensures one-on-one relationships with professors. Whether it is through advising, mentorship, or collaborative research, LSU is committed to your success.
Q&A with Assistant Dean Jada Lewis and Darria Carter
What do you think is the importance of faculty/student relationships and how do you foster them?
Darria: I do my best to make as many meaningful connections with faculty as possible. You never know what can come from that connection, especially if you consistently communicate what you are interested in and what you want to do career-wise. In my case, I've openly expressed interest in having a career in the automotive industry and made the right connection, which eventually led me to my first internship with an automotive supplier.
Dean Lewis: In my classes, I am very intentional about scheduling at least 30 minutes with every student outside of our scheduled class at the beginning of the semester. This gave me an opportunity to get to know the students, their backgrounds and experiences, and how I could support them in their transition to college and a career in engineering. It also gave the students an opportunity to get to know me on a deeper level outside of the classroom and connect and find common ground.
Of what achievement are you particularly proud?
Dean Lewis: As an advisor, I really get to know the students and their concerns and what resources that they need to be successful. From my interactions with them, several signature programs were birthed in my diversity office that have become part of the fabric and culture of the College of Engineering. Our Engineering Tiger Connections (ETC) event is one that targets our incoming freshmen and transfer students and is held during the first week of school during the Bengal Bound week. The ETC event has blossomed to more than 300 new students that are introduced to the engineering student organizations, engineering student services staff, and other resources in the College of Engineering so that they can be successful. It’s an intentional event for these new students to be integrated into our engineering community at the beginning of their LSU student experience.