Fairmont State University faculty member Tia M. Como has been awarded the 2011 American Society of Civil Engineers Region 4 Outstanding Faculty Advisor Award.
The American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) made the award to Como for her outstanding work, dedication and exemplary service as a faculty advisor to the FSU ASCE student chapter. The Region 4 award includes faculty members from West Virginia, Virginia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Arkansas, Tennessee and Indiana.
“On behalf of the ASCE Educational Activities community, I extend my personal congratulations to you on this accomplishment. It is the enthusiasm and commitment of faculty advisors like you that produce excellent student organizations such as yours,” wrote Dr. James C. Williams, Chair, ASCE Committee on Student Activities, in the award letter.
Como was nominated for the award by the ASCE Student Chapter officers through the chapter’s 2010 annual report of activities.
“As Fairmont State University’s 2010 ASCE Student Chapter President, I have found Professor Como to be the archetype of The Faculty Advisor. She always makes herself available when the club needs help, yet she makes a point for the students to do all of the work themselves,” wrote Tabitha Neuhauser in the nomination letter. “As a woman and mother myself, I find her accomplishments, as a professor and faculty advisor, as well as a professional, to be beyond inspirational. She has shown me that it is possible to be involved in professional activities and societies, while balancing a career and family.”
The letter also stated that Como “is a remarkable instructor. She truly cares about her students and spends time, both in and out of class, to ensure that everyone in the class understands the material.”
As a result of Como’s efforts and those of the student chapter members, the university’s ASCE chapter has won a number of awards. The chapter received the Region 4 Governor’s Award in 2008 and 2009 and was the runner up in 2009 and 2010 for the Ridgway Award, which is the top ASCE award given each year to one of the 300 global student chapters. In 2008 and 2009, the student chapter earned invitations to the National Steel Bridge Competition.
In addition, the chapter has won eight consecutive regional concrete canoe championships, leading to eight national competition invitations. In June 2011, the FSU chapter finished 13th in the nation overall, competing against universities such as California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and Universite Laval of Quebec, Canada..
Como was born and raised in Monessen, Pa., and is a 1980 graduate of Monessen High School. She currently resides in Morgantown and has three daughters, Elida, Elisa and Melia.