Ms. Kelsea Palmer
Academic Department: Computer Science
Academic Department: Engineering
Academic Department: Mathematics
Graduation Year: 2013
Kelsea Palmer exemplified the spirit of adventure, hard work, and perseverance that we look for and hope to develop in our prospective students. An Environmental Engineering major with a concentration in Ecological Engineering, Kelsea still found time to be heavily involved in Student Government, Club Ice Hockey, Research in Bolivia and Pennsylvania, and presenting her findings at a National Conference in Tupelo, Mississippi. From working hand-in-hand with rural Bolivians to build a water treatment system in the high Andes (see picture of Kelsea dipping her toes in Lake Titicaca!) to studying acid mine drainage treatment systems in the valleys of Appalachia, Kelsea was a consistent top performer. On top of all of that, Kelsea served as a TA for multiple engineering classes and often represented our program and the broader school at public events, even lobbying our state government. Kelsea took full advantage of the unique opportunities presented to her by our program and this led to her receiving two job offers upon graduation, one of which she took with Skelly & Loy, Inc., a well-respected environmental services firm. We look forward to even greater success in her future!
My time at SFU was full of life changing experiences and character building lessons. Because of this, and innumerable other reasons, I will always think of SFU as my second home. But, the true reason I kept coming back every year, studying hard and getting involved up to my nose in activities and service was the Environmental Engineering department. It wasn’t just the rigorous courses, the countless networking opportunities, appreciation for hard work or the humble and passionate professors. It was the idea of a lifelong career and professional self I was creating while there. The first time I met Dr. Bandstra, he was a little nervous it seemed (not as freshman-nervous as I was!) but he had so much fire and passion and trust in our potential and the potential of the program. I got to see that come to fruition. Along the way I met Dr. Strosnider who led me to gain experience and find my passion in ecological engineering, not to mention how to play ice hockey like James Neal! There isn’t a day that goes by when I don’t think of my fellow students or something one of the professors taught me. As I have started to blend into the “real world” I am realizing how I stand out because of SFU’s Environmental Engineering department. My apartment walls are littered with pictures from our trip to Bolivia and my new office is full of my text books. I would speak to anyone on the department’s behalf in a brochure or a sidewalk conversation. Just like SFU and my future, I hold the ENVE department very close to my heart. If you find the environment inspiring and have a knack for a little bit of math and a whole lot of rewarding work then go for it!