Shields receives learning communities early achievement award


Civil engineering academic adviser Katie Shields was awarded the 2020 Learning Communities Early Achievement in Learning Community Coordination Award in June. 

This award is given by the director of Learning Communities to an Iowa State faculty or staff member who has demonstrated outstanding performance in learning community coordination early within their careers.  

Shields has been in the civil, construction and environmental engineering department at Iowa State since 2017 and has experience working with academic advising and orientation, as well as backgrounds in leadership and organization. 

“To me it means that the progress within the learning communities are having an impact,” Shields said. “We’ve been trying to make it more engaging, we’ve been trying to do more with industry, alumni — even making it more hands-on so students can really explore their major right away getting to Iowa State their freshman year.” 

Shield’s work with the learning communities includes academic components, development and ensuring that students get the whole collegiate experience from classes to extracurriculars. 

Shields notes that her favorite part of her job is getting to know the students she advises. 

“As they go through their classes and they have internship experiences and they discover what part of civil engineering they want to go into and really explore all Iowa State has to offer, it’s fun for me to keep up with them and see what they’re doing,” Shields said. “It’s really cool to hear where are they going next, what are they doing, what are they excited about.”