Engineering student wins international leadership award

Jennie Kushner

The University has yet another award to boast about thanks to the hard work of Bianca Covington.

Covington, a 2009 UA alumna, is the second student at the University to receive the American Society of Mechanical Engineers’ Charles T. Main Student Section Silver Award.

The award recognizes student leaders of ASME throughout the world for their leadership and service contributions, Covington said.

“The ASME student chapter on campus was kind enough to nominate me for this prestigious award without my knowing it,” she said.

Covington said she found out she made it to the semifinals in May. In June, she won the award.

“Just being nominated by my chapter was a great honor in itself, especially when I was able to read over the packet they had submitted to get me into the semi-finals,” Covington said.

“Knowing that my chapter still felt that way about me even after I graduated meant so much to me,” she said.

Covington said she was overwhelmed when was she selected as a Silver Medal recipient.

“To be recognized among all those nominees and to be placed among those that came before me was quite humbling,” she said.

The award didn’t only recognize Covington, she said, but also the ASME members and officers.

“This award brings attention to our department, not only in the nation but in the world, as ASME is an international organization,” she said.

“This will get our university’s name out world-wide for not only our excellent athletic programs but for our outstanding academic programs as well,” Covington said.

Covington said the award encourages the students who are looking to be more active at their university and community to apply to Alabama.

“They are more aware of the opportunities our school can provide them,” she said.

Covington currently works for Samsung Austin Semiconductor in Austin, Texas. She attributes much of her success to the University.

“I believe that my strong academic background combined with the life skills I gained through my involvement with many organizations at UA distinguished me among all other candidates and gave me the job I currently have,” she said.

“I was not only given an education through books but also the real-life skills necessary to interact on a daily basis with our society filled with so many different cultural backgrounds.”

Engineering students think Covington’s achievements are inspiring.

Jennifer Hess, a sophomore mechanical engineering aspires to achieve what Covington has.

“Our major is tough, especially being a female trying to succeed in this field,” Hess said. “I think winning this award is important for our school, our department and for women engineers.

“In this tough economy, it is nice to hear of a recent graduate who has succeeded in their field and found a great job,” Hess said.