Society of Automotive Engineering Race Team wins Communitas Award, Creates Cookbook for Foodbank-Mechanical Engineering - Carnegie Mellon University

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Society of Automotive Engineering Race Team wins Communitas Award, Creates Cookbook for Foodbank

Carnegie Mellon University's Society of Automotive Engineering (SAE) Race Team participated in the national USA Weekend's "Make A Difference Day" on October 21, 2011 by collecting food and donating a homemade cookbook to the Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank. Hugh Ross, a CMU mechanical engineering student and head of the SAE race team, hosted the event, dubbed "Racing Against Hunger," to help raise awareness of the need to help combat malnutrition. The race team presented food bank officials, including nutritionist Jesse Sharrard, with a unique cookbook featuring "one dish, no-fuss" meals.

The team also enlisted the help of the H.J. Heinz Company, which donated its Heinz 57 sauce to celebrate the racecar's number 57, and to help mark the brand's 100-year anniversary. Other food contributors included The Oakmont Bakery, the Frick Park Market in Point Breeze and Ruggeri's Deli in Squirrel Hill.

"We are so very pleased that Heinz is helping us because our team car this year drew the competitive racing number 57," said John Wiss, an adjunct professor of mechanical engineering at CMU. "Our students are extremely dedicated to helping the community in novel ways."

Food Bank CEO Jermaine Husser said university students energize the whole community with their creativity and drive. "And their taking action to help others is the real hope for the future of this region and this nation."

Mr. Husser wasn't the only one to recognize the students' initiative and leadership.  The group was awarded a 2011 Communitas Award in the category 2.1 Organization's Specific Program.  Communitas Awards recognizes exceptional businesses, organizations and individuals that are unselfishly giving of themselves and their resources, and those that are changing how they do business to benefit their communities.

UPDATE: Read more about team leader Mike Ornstein in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review!