College of Engineering News • Iowa State University

Jared Benson: Outstanding senior in civil engineering

Major: Civil engineering

Hometown: Prior Lake, Minnesota  

Clubs and Activities: Learning Communities Peer Mentor, American Society of Civil Engineers, Concrete Canoe Club

Awards and Honors: ASCE Carl and Dorothy Ekberg Structural Engineering Scholarship, AGC Scholarship, Dean Farnsworth – Civil Engineering Scholarship, OPUS Design Build Scholarship, Phillips Family Civil Engineering Scholarship, Millhone Engineering Scholarship, National Merit Scholar, Dean’s List, Competitive Excellence Scholarship


Jared Benson wanted a campus with a campus feel, not a city feel, making his decision to come to Iowa State an easy one.  

From Prior Lake, Minnesota, Benson chose Iowa State due to its beautiful campus, the renowned engineering programs and its proximity to home.  

Throughout his time at Iowa State, Benson has served as a Learning Communities peer mentor and been involved with American Society of Civil Engineers and the Concrete Canoe Club.   

“A big thing is always building a new mold each year that we’ll then pour on top of,” Benson said about the struggles within CCC. “One of the big things that I implemented, was, we’ve always done everything by hand, but then I was able to start implementing computer software to basically have a machine cut out some of the mold for us, rather than us having to shape it ourselves.” 

Benson hopes the implementation of this now digital aspect of the CCC will impact the club for years to come.  

Benson’s advice to underclassmen is to not be afraid to try new things.

“That’s what’s really cool is that there’s all these freshman students that are really curious about trying all these different things, not sure what engineering major they want to do, so I’m just like ‘hey, try something out, go to a club meeting, see what kind of vibes you get from it,’” Benson said.  

Reminiscing on his own experience with an influential peer mentor his freshman year, Benson remembers being assisted with Engineering Career Fair prep, editing his resume and scholarship applications.  

He really, really kind of helped me out a lot and led by example, and I saw how successful he was and I wanted to get there too,” Benson said.  

Another influential mentor Benson has had throughout his time at Iowa State is Simon Laflamme, associate professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering. 

“He is an absolute genius,” Benson said. Seeing his grasp on all these complex concepts is very cool, too.”

While Benson works hard, he makes sure to take some time to play hard, as well.   

“Tailgating football games easily takes the cake,” he said about his favorite memory from his time at Iowa State.   

Outside of football season, Benson enjoys spending time outdoors, playing either volleyball or Spikeball and enjoying nature.  

Post-graduation, Benson is going to work full time for Kimley-Horn, at their Twin Cities/St. Paul location.