Project Lead the Way Students Shine in National Spotlight

Project Lead The Way

American Structurepoint salutes students from a Project Lead the Way class that we funded who rocked the house at a recent PLTW Summit. Students from James A. Garfield Indianapolis Public School 31 were the only elementary students in the nation chosen to share their stories of how PLTW has changed their lives. The students presented to more than 800 PreK-12th grade educators, education students, university leaders, and business and industry leaders attending the summit.

In celebration of our company’s 50th anniversary in 2016, we invested $250,000 in PLTW programming for Indianapolis Public Schools students. Since then, 50 PLTW programs have expanded or launched in IPS. Fourteen programs launched in the 2019-2020 school year, including one at School 31.

PLTW partners with more than 11,500 US schools to deliver programs in computer science, engineering, and biomedical science. The summit offered various sessions geared to help educators and community leaders better prepare students with in-demand and transferrable skills to succeed in STEM careers and in college.

“This is our first year as a Project Lead the Way school and it’s fantastic,” the four fourth-grade scholars proclaimed in unison. They shared information about the hands-on experiments they are doing to learn about different types of potential and kinetic energy. While that is impressive in its own right, I am more impressed by the life lessons PLTW has taught them.  Here are a few they shared with the crowd.

  • “PLTW has helped me be brave and given me more confidence to express my thoughts and ideas with others.”
  • “I am not afraid of failing anymore. I know I can work with my teammates to figure it out.”
  • “With all of the communicating and collaborating we do, I’ve moved outside of my comfort zone.”
  • “Before Project Lead the Way, I didn’t know what an engineer was, but now I know what I want to be when I grow up … a mechanical engineer.”

Congratulations scholars on an amazing job! See for yourselves. Please check out a rehearsal of their four-minute presentation at this Facebook link.

 

Project Lead The Way Partnership Enriches IPS

Lead The Way Infographic5Three years ago, American Structurepoint made its single largest community service donation ever to expand educational opportunities to Indianapolis Public Schools (IPS) students. In celebration of our company’s 50th anniversary, American Structurepoint invested $250,000 in Project Lead The Way (PLTW) programming for IPS students.

PLTW, an Indianapolis-based nonprofit, provides activity-based courses for grades Pre-K through 12 that build critical skills in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM).  We recently received a program report from PLTW. I’m proud to share these highlights.

  • 3,200 Pre-K through grade 12 IPS students have received PLTW programming
  • 14 new or expanded PLTW programs launched in the 2019-2020 school year
  • 20 new PLTW programs launched for students in grades in kindergarten through grade 5
  • 16 new PTL programs launched for students in grades 6 through 8
  • 60+ teachers received PLTW collaborative professional development training
  • In 2017, students from a PLTW class funded by American Structurepoint competed in a global robotics competition.

These results are just what we envisioned when we made our initial investment to bring additional PLTW programming to IPS. More IPS students than ever before are receiving knowledge and transferrable skills needed to succeed in computer science, engineering, and biomedical science careers. 

These words from IPS teacher Leach Putnam Hallman captures even better the benefits of our PLTW investment.

“Project Lead The Way has meant so much to our students. As a Title-I school in a high poverty area of Indianapolis, our students do not always have access to the same opportunities as students living in more affluent areas. The program has raised the bar for learning and helped to level the academic playing field. When I teach PLTW, students are actively engaged and excited about the lessons. Some classes even cheer when I walk into the room.”

Her letter says it all for me. PLTW and American Structurepoint are making a difference in the lives of IPS students. It doesn’t get any better than that.

Firm Enters New Era at 9025 River Road

2018.00209 - 9025 River Road - Open Office Rendering

Open Office Space Rendering

American Structurepoint proudly enters a new era at a new Indianapolis location – 9025 River Road on the northeast side of Indianapolis.

This move represents an exciting point in our company’s 52-year history. The new location serves as the corporate design center for our firm, which has grown to more than 450 employees working in 11 disciplines from 15 different design centers across the country. We now have our entire Indianapolis staff under one roof in the same building, which allows for better collaboration among our employees, teams, and disciplines. We are in a space that will be our home for years that will support our growing firm and gives us the room and amenities in an excellent location to help us retain and recruit new talent.

Our Indianapolis design center features updated, open workspace and plenty of natural daylighting on each floor, attributes that our employees told us they wanted in a new workplace. We also have many huddle rooms for impromptu meetings, state of-the-art conference rooms, a new café area where employees can eat and socialize, and expanded onsite exercise facilities.

Architecture Presentation 252 to Gaskins 274

Meeting Spaces Rendering

Over the next few months, we will be adding final design touches to our new home. We want these touches to be reflective of our corporate culture and accentuate what we do best. These include installing our mission statement, core values, a community service wall, and a company timeline display in various locations throughout the building.

9025 break room 2

Fourth Floor Cafe Rendering

Once all these are in place, we will host a public open house in 2020. We are eager to grow into our space and share it with you. Please watch this blog and check out our website and social media channels too for updates as we add more features to our beautiful new home.

American Structurepoint Celebrates 20 Years in Columbus

OH 20th Anniversary Party (2)

Our Columbus office recently reached a big milestone – 20 years of doing business! That’s right, we first ventured to Columbus in 1999. To celebrate 20 years of success as well as our new office space, we hosted an open house for clients and staff, appropriately on May 20.

The open house gave us the opportunity to thank our Ohio clients for collaborating with us to design better infrastructure and more importantly, improve the quality of life in their communities. We welcomed about 100 guests such as several mayors, including Columbus Mayor Andy Ginther, and Ohio Governor Mike DeWine.

Our new Columbus space is in the same building at 2550 Corporate Exchange Drive, but across the hallway from our previous location. Our 50+ Columbus employees have a better workspace that features more collaboration areas and natural lighting. We also have room for future growth as we add more staff to better serve Ohio.

It is so exciting and gratifying to see the success at Columbus, American Structurepoint’s first office beyond our Indianapolis headquarters. From a lone employee 20 years ago, we’ve grown to offer nine engineering services, including transportation, surveying, environmental services, construction solutions, utility infrastructure, site/civil, program management, structural, and investigative.

We are involved in several key projects in Columbus, including the Career Gateway Center, Parsons Village, and the reconstruction of Hudson Street, which is key to revitalizing the historic Linden neighborhood. Many Ohio staff also are doing design work on our largest design-build win in Ohio, an $86 million redesign of the I-75/I-74 interchange in Cincinnati.

American Structurepoint also is recognized as a leading firm in Ohio. For the fourth consecutive year, we earned a place on the Best Employers in Ohio list. In 2018, we rose to 14th place in Columbus Business First’s list of Central Ohio’s top 25 engineering firms.

We sincerely thank the Ohio community for allowing us to serve you, and we look forward to many more years of continued success and growth.

OH 20th Anniversary Party (11)

From left to right: American Structurepoint Senior Vice President Walid Gemayel, American Structurepoint Vice President Kent Moore, Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, and American Structurepoint President Rick Conner

 

American Structurepoint Achieves Best Employer Rankings in Indiana and Ohio

BPTW LogosWe are ecstatic that American Structurepoint has been named among the best places to work in Indiana and Ohio, again! For the fourth time in five years, American Structurepoint earned a spot on the 2019 Best Places to Work in Indiana list. Even better, our Ohio office now boasts its fourth consecutive year making the 2019 Best Employers in Ohio list.

Best Companies Group, a firm that handles the selection process, oversees similar programs in 22 states, 10 regions, and 19 industries. The lists are compiled after analyzing employer reports and comprehensive employee surveys.

Simply put, our people make all of this possible. Our employees continually demonstrate the drive, talent, and commitment to delivering excellence, value, and exemplary customer service to our clients. Our 450 employees from Indiana and Ohio, to Florida and Texas, also are passionate about our company mission, which is to improve the quality of life for our communities.

Engaged, committed employees will always go the extra mile to produce extraordinary results for clients. Our executive team couldn’t be more proud of our staff for partnering with communities to make awesome projects happen!

We will learn our final rankings on both lists within the next few weeks. Until then, thank you to all our employees who make American Structurepoint a truly remarkable workplace.

American Structurepoint Named Design Firm of the Year

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Just wow! Everyone at American Structurepoint is so honored to be named 2018 Design Firm of the Year by ENR Midwest. We are beyond gratified and so honored to achieve industry recognition for delivering quality projects for the communities we serve.

A blog on the ENR website said this about us, “The depth and breadth of American Structurepoint’s work really set the 52-year-old firm apart … and won over a majority of the voting editors at ENR.”

Several of our projects celebrated grand openings in 2017, among them the BlueSky Technology Partners headquarters, Purdue Technology Center Aerospace, the South Bend Smarts Street initiative,  and the State Route 83-Mills Road Roundabout in Lorain County, Ohio. Other projects had groundbreakings in 2017 – the Market Avenue Phase III road project in Terre Haute, the CEDIA headquarters in Fishers, and the 35,000-sft Hammond Sportsplex and Community Center.

We also were part of a team honored by ENR Midwest for the 2017 Project of the Year, the East End Crossing project. American Structurepoint designed Section 6 of the East End Crossing that included 4 miles of SR 625, reconstruction of two interchange ramps, and designing 17 bridges.

ENR Midwest  has tracked our growth over the past several years. American Structurepoint has consistently held a spot in the top 15 of ENR Midwest’s Top Design Firms ranking since 2010. We jumped two spots to No. 13 this year with $82.27 million in revenue in 2017, up from the $74.36 million in the previous year.

Our people make all of this possible. Our employees continually demonstrate the drive, talent, and commitment to delivering excellence and innovation to our clients on time and on budget. I am so proud of the entire American Structurepoint team and even better, looking forward to delivering top-notch projects for each and every client in the years ahead.

 

 

 

Walid Gemayel Leads American Structurepoint’s Ohio Team

Let me introduce Walid Gemayel, PE, senior vice president and executive leader of our Ohio team. Walid brings a wealth of expertise to our firm. He has 30 years of progressive construction and design expertise in both the public and private sectors that includes four years as a deputy director of the Ohio Department of Transportation.

Walid’s role allows him to use his know-how and technical savvy to help American Structurepoint’s Ohio clients recognize new opportunities and to assist them in tackling complex infrastructure issues. He is helping grow our Ohio staff of over 50 professionals working in our Columbus and Cincinnati offices.

When it comes to complex, large-scale projects, you’ll want Walid Gemayel on your team. He is well respected for his leadership skills and for his problem-solving abilities that bring value to the government agencies and local communities we serve. He excels at looking at the big picture. Walid’s proactive management approach brings to every project a strong ability to collaborate with clients and stakeholders to create a partnering atmosphere that fosters open communication and trust.

Walid is key in taking the entire Ohio team to the next level in delivering complex, innovative, multidiscipline work that improves the quality of life for Ohio communities. Our Ohio office has achieved steady growth since opening our doors in 1999. We’ve built a strong reputation in the transportation, surveying, investigative, civil, structural, construction solutions, and environmental services disciplines. Columbus Business First continually ranks American Structurepoint among the Top 25 Central Ohio Engineering Firms.

Under Walid’s leadership, we expect to accomplish many great things for our Ohio clients in 2018 and for many more years to come. Our staff is well equipped to spot opportunities, tackle challenges, and maximize resources. We will save you time and money. For more information on services, call 614.901.2235.

A Well-Earned Partnership: Thirst Project and American Structurepoint

One of our company’s community outreach programs of which I am most proud is our work with the Thirst Project. This nonprofit organization is the world’s leading youth water activism organization dedicated to building freshwater wells in developing nations and impoverished communities to provide people with safe, clean water.

In just nine years of existence, Thirst Project has raised $8.8 million to build 2,217 projects in 13 countries. Not only that, the organization is nearly 74 percent successful in reaching its ambitious goal of providing clean drinking water to the entire kingdom of Swaziland, located in southern Africa, by 2022.

I first learned about Thirst Project in 2011 when I met the organization’s dynamic, young CEO, Seth Maxwell, 29. Upon seeing Seth’s passion for ending the global water crisis, I knew American Structurepoint had to get involved. After all, providing safe, clean water to improve quality of life is part of our DNA.

Our $73,000 in contributions to the Thirst Project work has produced six new wells that pump clean, safe water to people in desperate need of this essential resource. We recently received a video of our latest well that provides clean water to the village of Ondiyaneni. Please consider supporting this organization in bringing clean water to those who need it most. To learn more, click here.

Supporting a Charity Bike Ride to Fight Cancer

1,600 miles. 17 days. 1 mission.

Jim Frey Bike Team Pic.jpeg

One of our clients who combines his passion for charity organizations and bike riding is at it again. Real estate developer Jim Frey and four of his friends are going on a 17-day bike ride from Minneapolis to New Orleans to raise $200,000 for the Women’s Global Cancer Alliance (WGCA), a Louisville-based organization that helps women in developing countries live healthier lives.

Jim’s team, known as the FivexFives, begin their ride on October 15. They plan to cover 95 miles a day for 17 days along the Mississippi River, concluding on Halloween. Each team member has been affected in some way by cancer through friends and relatives who serve as the inspiration for their ride.

Three years ago, Jim completed a nine-day solo bike ride benefitting WGCA that raised $80,000. Jim is excited about the 2017 trek that more than doubles the monetary goal for WGA and doubles the first ride’s distance.

“I have participated in many fundraising rides over the years, but this one is particularly close to my heart,” Jim said. “WGCA is doing great work across the world to treat and defeat cervical cancer, and I’m very proud to do something to support their cause.”

I invite you follow to Jim’s journey on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube by searching for “FivexFivesRide.” More importantly, please donate to the cause by clicking here and click on the “Donate Now” button.