Arkansas Tau Upsilon
Fayetteville, AR 72701
The Arkansas Tau Upsilon Chapter of Pi Tau Sigma was formally installed May 8,1959 by National President Carroll M. Leonard and National Secretary-Treasurer David S. Clark.
The outgrowth of the chapter started during the fall of 1958 when a group of outstanding mechanical engineering students, under the able leadership of Professor T. B. Jefferson, petitioned the National Council for a chapter to be established at the University of Arkansas.
Arkansas Tau Upsilon has been active in carrying out the high ideals of Pi Tau Sigma by cooperating with the Department of Mechanical Engineering, A.S.M.E., and S.A.E., in matters of departmental interest. The chapter provided guides during open house ceremonies for the new Mechanical Engineering Building. Some of the activities that this chapter engages in are: The annual Engineers Open House, St. Patrick Festivities, Engineers Banquet, and the chapter's Spring Banquet. The chapter expects to identify itself with some new projects which will stimulate interest in the Profession of Mechanical Engineering.
ANNUAL SUMMARY REPORTS
2022 - 2023 Andrew Bexten - President
The Arkansas Tau Upsilon Chapter of Pi Tau Sigma was able to capitalize on its first full year back from the pandemic. The chapter was able to grow as well as make a solid contribution to the university and the community. As the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter takes pride in our rich traditions, we are eager to have taken new members who share this passion as well. The chapter was involved in multiple different activities within the Mechanical Engineering department on campus.
Both semesters looked very similar this year, the chapter was able to continue our initiation process as past classes have done. The initiates were selected through the criteria that the chapter upholds and were reached out to via email. An information session was then held to invite the qualifying individuals to learn more about the chapter as well as ask any concerning questions that they had. We have solidified a relationship this past year with a wood shop to cut the boards for our initiates, in receiving both the board and the bents the initiation process is able to proceed. The service project for both semesters has switched from park cleanups to giving back to the campus as we have focused on cleaning the campus and the surrounding areas. We have hosted dinner parties that include the entire chapter and allow everyone to get together.
This year the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter of Pi Tau Sigma has made great strides in recovering from the pandemic and continuing its rich traditions. The new executive committee is composed of very talented new and recurring executives that all share the same passion and drive to propel the Tau Upsilon chapter to its highest potential.
2021-2022 John Dixon Jr. – President
The Arkansas Tau Upsilon Chapter of Pi Tau Sigma was able to continue its traditions through the back end of the pandemic. As this past year was a difficult one in a lot of respects, the future of Tau Upsilon is bright with the newly initiated members. The adaptations from the pandemic were in full effect this year and with the CDC guidelines lessening, the chapter was able to grow with new members eager to keep the traditions going here at the University of Arkansas.
The fall semester had its hardships, but the chapter was able to grow from them. The initiates were selected and were reached out to via email for an information held in person. The board needed to be reordered for the new initiates for the fall semester but due to the supply chain, it was difficult to get them made from a local carpenter in a reasonable time frame. Due to this, the chapter had to postpone the initiations process to the spring semester with all the invitees from the fall joining in with the spring invitees for one large class.
The spring semester was a semester of growth for the Tau Upsilon Chapter. The initiates selected in the fall and the ones selected in the spring were invited to an information session held in person to go over all the traditions and requirements with the executive committee as well as the faculty advisor. With the bents and newly cut boards in, the initiates were able to continue the tradition of Pi Tau Sigma. The traditional service event was held in the city of Fayetteville for a trail cleanup and this event allowed the initiates and members to be able to get to know each other better. We also held a game night in person and got to play board games and jack box. This event had a great turn out and all the members and initiates had a great time. Using the University’s laser cutter, the boards were laser etched so the initiates were able to get the faculty signatures needed for initiation. The initiation ceremony was held in person was successful. Due to the roll over from the fall semester, the class was a large one for Tau Upsilon. As this past year was a difficult one, Tau Upsilon was able to overcome adversity and continue and thrive in the spring semester with holding initiation and electing a new executive committee for the next year.
2020-2021 Jake Carter - President
The Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter has remained fairly constant in its traditions throughout the years. This year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this chapter has seen some trials that have forced the organization to need to adapt and change some of the structure that has been seen in the past. However, the membership requirements, and overall membership and initiate experience, has not been reduced due to these adaptations.
The fall semester was largely conducted virtually except for outside events and an initiation that followed CDC social distancing guidelines. The initiates were selected and met most of the members of the chapter over zoom early in the semester. The chapter participated in multiple cleanup efforts around the city at Lake Fayetteville, Mt. Sequoya, and parts of the Greenway trails. We also had members volunteer at the animal shelter, living assistance homes, and food banks in our city. We were unable to hold a traditional social event at a local brewery this semester, but we were able to socialize remotely utilizing zoom and online gaming to stay connected to members. Towards the end of the semester we were able to hold a board signing event so the initiates could meet all the members and faculty in person before initiation. This event allowed the initiates to also use the University’s laser cutter to engrave plaques with their names on it along with signatures from current members and faculty. This signing was required to allow for greater connections to be made between initiates, members, and faculty. As mentioned, initiation was conducted in person following tradition, but the semesterly banquet following the ceremony was sadly cancelled due to COVID restrictions at the time. The initiates were, however, to all participate in the banquet the following semester.
Spring in Arkansas opened up even further as many students and faculty members began to get vaccinated. This allowed for a predominantly normal semester for the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter. We held an in person meet and greet for the potential new members to meet the executive board and advisor. We were able to have meetings with all members in person which brought forth productive discussion for the organization and closer relationships amongst members and faculty. Our traditional, public social events were conducted as they had been in the past with a trip to a local brewery and a small banquet following officer elections where members went out to eat together. Our service events went unfazed as well with another trail cleanup and polishing the bents around campus. The spring semester was a nice reminder of normalcy after the tough year that the COVID pandemic had brought, and the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter is thankful to have had a successful year through the hard times
2019-2020 Harrison Dunn President
As a chapter deeply rooted in our tradition this year has been a large adjustment for the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter. The Spring semester saw a large change in the operations of our chapter including the reduction of the majority of our membership requirements beyond the traditional Pi Tau Sigma requirements.
Thankfully the Fall semester was able to complete with no issues. The initiates were selected and introduced to the organization early in the semester. Our chapter was able to participate in Make a Difference Day in Fayetteville and brought all of our initiates to clean up trails around the city we cherish so deeply. We also had members volunteer at the animal shelter, living assistance homes, and food banks in our city. The chapter was also able to hold a social event at a local brewery where our members could meet the initiates and begin to develop a connection with them. This connection was furthered at our board signing event where the initiates are able to use the university’s laser cutter to engrave plaques with their names on them. The initiates got to know their Pi Tau Sigma faculty and students even more as they were required to obtain signatures for the board they laser engraved. Initiation was a great night capped by our traditional banquet following the ceremony where the new members were able to connect with existing members and faculty even more. This semester allowed for a great connection between initiates and the existing organization.
In the Spring semester the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter saw a great change in the way we would be conducting our operations. The selection process remained the same and the new initiates were brought in for an informational session and a meet and greet with leadership and the advisor. Unfortunately, this would be the last event that the chapter would have before initiation. We canceled all of our events due to the spread of COVID-19 and allowed our initiates to continue on reduced requirements. The chapter was still able to hold initiation and we were happy to bring the new members in even during a trying time. Though we lost many of our traditions during this semester we were happy that our members were healthy. Our hearts went out to those who were less fortunate and our praises out to essential workers. This semester is not one that the Arkansas Tau Upsilon chapter hopes to see happen again, but is proud of the rallying of its members and leadership to still induct the Spring class.
2018-2019 Harrison Dunn - President
Arkansas Tau Upsilon is a chapter which tends to stick to its roots and as such the events each year do not change drastically. Half the events each semester are social events, and the other half are service events. We hold social events to help new members meet older members and foster a stronger bond amongst all members. The service events in which we participate are aimed at bettering the city we call home while allowing us to give back.
For the past several years one of the social events we have held for the initiates is a brewery Tour. There are many local breweries in North-West Arkansas so there are plenty to choose from. This year for the fall semester we attended a tour at JJ’s Beer Garden. This was actually the same location as last year, but as the brewery is still relatively new there was plenty of excitement for the tour. The experience here was quite different from the brewery tour we attended during the spring semester, Columbus House, as it has a longer running history than the newer JJ’s Beer Garden. Columbus House was more of a hobby for some excellent brewers, while JJ’s is more geared towards the college crowd. The other main social event we hold every semester is a Board Signing Party. We hold this event so that initiates can get to know the existing members. It also helps the initiates gather all the appropriate signatures for their plaque prior to initiation. Additionally, to encourage initiates to finish their plaques early, we held a Board Making Event where we used a laser cutter to raster the boards for new initiates. This built upon our previous experience in making the boards more uniform and professional. Additionally, this allowed our initiates and members to gain further experience in the shops the University of Arkansas has made available to mechanical engineering students.
The two volunteer activities we make sure to do each semester are a cleanup part of the Fayetteville Bike Trail, and a cleanup at Lake Fayetteville. The cleanup along the Fayetteville Bike Trail is typically self-organized. We simply tell members which Saturday we have selected for the service event and equip ourselves with everything we will need to clean the trail. Each semester we switch with part of the bike trail we clean from campus. One semester we’ll go North from Dickson Street, and the next semester we’ll go South so that we can cover the whole trial in a year. The other main volunteer event we do each semester is the Lake Fayetteville Cleanup. This event is usually hosted by the Lake Fayetteville Watershed or Washington County Extension Water Quality. For this event we give our Saturday morning to help clean-up Lake Fayetteville. This event not only helps ensure that the trash we pick up does not end up in lake and keeps the many activity courses and courts they have around the lake beautiful and clean, it also helps to educate the public on where their water comes from and why it is important to not litter. The Fayetteville Watershed also helps educate adults and children on the nearby wildlife, the ecosystem, how it should be treated, and how they can help protect it.
2017-2018 Reihle Saldana - President
Arkansas Tau Upsilon is a chapter with a lot of tradition. Many of the events in which we participate, or host do not vary much year to year. Half the events each semester are social events, and the other half are service events. We hold social events to help new members meet older members, who they may not have yet met. This helps to create community amongst old members and new members. The service events in which we participate also help strengthen the sense of community amongst members, while giving back to the community. Something new we did this past year was aid in the presentation of the Mechanical Engineering Department to the students in the Freshman Engineering Program on campus to invite them to become part of the mechanical engineering family.
For the past several years one of the social events we have held for the initiates is a brewery Tour. There are many local breweries in North West Arkansas and we try to go somewhere different each time. This year for the fall semester we attended a tour at JJ’s Beer Garden. It had opened a few months earlier, so they were excited to show us around and what they were all about. The experience here was quite different from the brewery tour we attended during the spring semester due to the fact that the second brewery, Columbus House, was much smaller and more established. Columbus House was more of a hobby for some excellent brewers, while JJ’s was definitely more of a party scene. The other main social event we hold every semester is a Board Signing Party. We hold this event so that initiates can get to know the existing members. It also helps the initiates gather all the appropriate signatures for their plaque prior to initiation. Another thing we did this past year to encourage initiates to finish their plaques early was to hold a Board Making Event. Here we showed them how to use laser cutter we have on campus. This helped ensure the uniformity in the boards as well as an opportunity for the initiates to get to know each other.
The two volunteer activities we make sure to do each semester are a cleanup part of the Fayetteville Bike Trail, and a cleanup at Lake Fayetteville. The cleanup along the Fayetteville Bike Trail is usually a very casual service event we do. We tell members and initiates what Saturday morning we will be going and then meet at the Mechanical Engineering building on campus. One of the officers will then bring gloves and trash bags to pass out when we reach the bike trail. Each semester we switch with part of the bike trail we clean from campus. One semester we’ll go North from Dickson Street, and the next semester we’ll go South, or vice-versa. The other main volunteer event we do each semester is the Lake Fayetteville Cleanup. This event is usually hosted by the Lake Fayetteville Watershed or Washington County Extension Water Quality. For this event we give our Saturday mornings to help clean-up Lake Fayetteville. This event not only helps ensure that the trash we pick up does not end up in lake and keeps the many activity courses and courts they have around the lake beautiful and clean, it also helps to educate the public on where their water comes from and why it is important to not litter. The Fayetteville Watershed also helps educate adults and children on the nearby wildlife, the ecosystem, how it should be treated, and how they can help protect it.