Dalton Clark: Outstanding senior in construction engineering

Major: Construction Engineering

Hometown: Tipton, Iowa

Clubs and activities: The Naval ROTC; the Mechanical Contractors Association (MCA); the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning (ASHRAE); and the Academic Success Center (ASC)

Awards and honors: Midshipman of the Semester with the ROTC, a full-tuition scholarship from Ryan Companies, and various other scholarships and sponsorships

Who was your most influential mentor while at Iowa State?
Brad Perkins
, teaching professor of civil, construction and environmental engineering, has been a great mentor for me. He taught me what the role of a mechanical engineer was in building construction and guided me on the path of being a mechanical emphasis. He has also helped me look for jobs and internships by putting me in contact with numerous employers.

What’s your favorite memory of your time at Iowa State?
Last spring before the pandemic, I went on a week-long road trip to Colorado and Utah with all of my friends and that was the best trip I have ever been on. We got to see and explore so much, and it was all before everything shut down. Coming back to Ames, classes had just gone online and campus was very different since everyone had moved back home. I enjoyed the days during that spring semester when my friends and I would take a break from class and hangout outside at central campus.

What’s your advice for first-year engineering students just starting at Iowa State?
I would tell all first-year students to try new things and to get involved in activities within your major. This is a really good chance to meet people, make friends, and have fun learning more about your major.

What’s one lesson you’re taking away from this challenging pandemic year?
During the past year I have learned how to manage my time more wisely. I didn’t have classes that I had to be at during certain times so finding time to make myself sit down and do schoolwork became very important. I also learned a lot about Ames and places around campus. Since most places were closed, we spent a lot more time outside, discovering new areas in and around Ames.

What are your plans for after graduation?
After graduation I would like to start working for an engineering consulting company that does HVAC and plumbing design or a contractor who manages large commercial projects. I am excited to take what I have learned here and apply it to the mechanical field of construction.

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