A little help goes a long way

Derrick Rollins remembers that the transition to college wasn’t easy. He needed help to succeed in and out of the classroom. It’s something he’s been paying back ever since.

Derrick uses his own college experiences to help make first-year students studying chemical engineering feel like they belong. That’s why he’s a mentor and has created several organizations like the Summer Program for Enhancing Engineering Development. It’s a program that works like an internship to prepare students for their freshman year.

This September Derrick was honored for helping students with a national Tau Beta Pi-McDonald Mentor Award. Marion and Capers W. McDonald and the Tau Beta Pi association established this award in 2005. It recognizes an outstanding engineering educator or professional for helping in the development of their students and colleagues.

The professors at Iowa State go out of their way to help students feel a part of the community. They believe it lets them reach their academic potential. That’s why you’ll see professors starting organizations, learning communities, and mentoring students in classrooms and research laboratories.

Derrick is currently working with students to make their experience unforgettable and showing them that a little help can take them a long way into their future.

More information about Dr. Rollins’ award (PDF).