Ask graduating senior Tanner Foreman about his accomplishments in the Walter Scott, Jr. College of Engineering and he’ll deflect to other people – part of what makes him an outstanding student in the eyes of his mentors.
“Looking back, anything I’ve overcome, it’s been because someone cared about me,” he says. “Whether a professor, or the staff at the Engineering Success Center, or my classmates – someone went out of their way to help when I needed it. There’s always been this spirit of helping each other succeed, my whole time at Colorado State.”
Foreman, who graduated from D’Evelyn High School in Denver, picked up on that sense of community early. Engineering runs in the family: He has both a parent and an older sibling in the field. So perhaps it was a natural choice, but he wasn’t certain until he toured CSU with one of the college’s student ambassadors.
“My tour guide made me feel so welcome, and connected me with the right people to get all my questions answered. I knew this was the place for me.”
He went on to become a student ambassador for the college himself, making sure others had that same welcome in their first glimpse of CSU.
Foreman chose to pursue engineering education as part of his engineering science major, which pairs the rigor of an engineering major with pedagogical training for secondary STEM education. He spent a summer teaching with AmeriCorps, which he says “gave me the chance to experience teaching while helping in the community.”
When the time came for his capstone student-teaching experience, he found himself facing not a traditional classroom, but students struggling with the topsy-turvy world of remote education amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.
He is philosophical about the experience. “It’s taught me patience,” he says. “You realize you’re not in control of the situation, and you need to adjust.”
Foreman credits his major for that sensitivity to the human element.
“I’ve gained a lot of soft skills – communication, collaboration, that sort of thing – due to the combination of engineering and education classes. I appreciate that emphasis on working with people, and I think it’ll help me stand out in the job market.”
Foreman is wrapping up his student-teaching experience, and an internship at Blue Canyon Technologies, a Colorado-based developer of spacecraft and satellite components. There he’s put his mechanical engineering specialization to work doing structural design with Blue Canyon’s solar array team. The internship echoes his senior design group’s work on self-deploying solar array structures for satellite applications. He plans to continue his focus on the aerospace industry after graduation.
Wherever he lands, Tanner Foreman is sure to make a difference.
“Tanner has a huge heart,” says Jacqui Goldring, manager of undergraduate recruitment for the college. “He cares for people and the world around him. He wants to solve problems and make a difference. His determination, compassion, and technical skills will change the world.”