Alumni listed below were featured in the latest edition of the St. Thomas Magazine. Who should be added to our list?
Did you know that engineers are in high demand but short supply across the country? The School of Engineering is the fastest-growing school at St. Thomas, and we are graduating engineers ready to enter the workforce and meet the diverse needs of industry. Meet some of our Tommie engineers!
Senta Riley ’12
Principal Mechanical Engineer
St. Paul, Minnesota
Senta Riley spends her days in St. Paul-based Ecolab, but her attention is all around the world. “I develop products and programs that address customer needs in Greater China, Middle East and Africa markets across food service and hospitality segments,” said Riley. “Within my team, we provide research and development support for the smaller regions that do not have local engineering support or need additional expertise. On any given day, I could be developing regional requirements for North America-led innovation, reviewing in-region product scale-up batch results, or conducting a financial analysis on a new product line.” She credits a unique class at St. Thomas for giving her a leg up in her current role. “My senior year, I took an engineering economics course, which consolidated essentials of a four-year business degree into one semester. This course is the foundation for my business acumen, providing insight on what levers impact growth and profitability, while providing transparency on supply chain and marketing functions.”
Andrew Senn ’03, ’06 MS
Like many alumni, Andrew Senn recounts time spent with friends as his most memorable. “I treasure those late nights with my classmates in the basement of the engineering building and the study lounge in Ireland Hall.” The two-time Tommie has seen his career path take unique turns. “After starting my career in R&D, my responsibilities shifted, and I am currently the vice president of marketing and strategy at Integer Holdings. Integer is one of the world’s largest Medical Device Outsourcing (MDO) companies that provides contract development and manufacturing for the medical device industry,” said Senn. He believes his time at St. Thomas prepared him for anything. “The St. Thomas engineering program was very challenging, and I couldn’t have made it through the program without the help of my classmates and professors. This has also been true in my career, as I rely heavily on a strong team around me.” He enjoys staying connected with future Tommies by leveraging the Tommie Network. “It has been helpful in recruiting talented engineering and marketing professionals.”
Rachel Gehlhar ’16
The Tommie Network has been powerful for Rachel Gehlhar. As a student, she was grateful for the one-on-one attention from her professors. “They showed me the skills and potential they saw in me that I could not yet see for myself. Their encouragement gave me courage and confidence, empowering me to pursue research opportunities and apply to high-ranked graduate schools,” said Gehlhar. “My connections at St. Thomas greatly contributed to the reasons I am in my current position. My professor and research advisor, Dr. Jeffrey Jalkio, connected me with my current Ph.D. adviser, since he also had him as a student at St. Thomas.” Gehlhar currently works in a lab led by St. Thomas alumnus Dr. Aaron Ames. “I conduct research on a powered prosthetic leg. … I enjoy the multidisciplinary nature of this work and think prostheses are a really great application for controls and robotics, since the work I do here could help someone walk more easily in the future.”