alumni and friends award winner

Kyler Blowers

Kyler Blowers earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering Technology and Master of Science in Engineering Technology from the Purdue Polytechnic Institute in 2015 and 2017, respectively. His master’s research primarily involved manufacturing processes, focusing on diecast manufacturing and process optimization.

Kyler recently began pursuing his PhD, also at the Purdue Polytechnic institute, in Spring 2022. He plans to focus his research on manufacturing processes, as well as strategies for teaching engineering and technology.

Jennifer Rider

“I acquired valuable technical skills at Purdue,” says Jennifer Rider, president and CEO of Lafayette Instrument Company, “After graduation, I interviewed with a multitude of companies and decided to work for a day-trading firm in Austin, Texas. Working with the latest technologies at Purdue meant I was immediately able to contribute in my new position.”

David Hetrick

“My construction management degree has served as the foundation for my entire career,” says David Hetrick, executive vice president of Executive Construction, Inc. “Building on the practical applications learned in classes such as surveying, scheduling, estimating and site logistics, I have further developed these skills through real life experiences.”

Karen Waldenmeyer

“My Purdue coursework included projects that spanned multiple weeks with a variety of deliverables, and completing the work successfully required teamwork. This is exactly how the real world works,” says Karen Waldenmeyer, staff software engineer for technical architecture at GE Aviation.

Derek Kultgen

Derek Kultgen serves as the lead engineer for the Mechanisms Engineering Test Loop (METL) at Argonne National Laboratory, designing equipment to be used in a molten sodium environment, developing experiments for testing next-generation nuclear reactor equipment, writing a data acquisition and control program, and reporting project progress to the Department of Energy, among other duties.

Rodrick C. Glass

“I have seen my Purdue degrees work for me in so many ways during my life’s journey,” says Rodrick C. Glass, executive vice president of business development at Allure, a Christie Company. “I learned so much in my classroom settings. The professors’ business acumen and work experience allowed for ‘real-world’ teaching and practical application in addition to theory. The hands-on approach to education was extremely beneficial as I entered the business world.”