Impact Award, Spring 2021
Kelly Anderson is a problem-solver at heart who chose to study electrical engineering to challenge herself, grow her skills and effect positive change in her community. She knew she could accomplish all of that in the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering, one of the six schools at the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University.
“I love electrical engineering because it covers such a broad range of subjects and areas,” Anderson says. “It isn’t just circuits: it’s programming, math, signal processing, understanding computer architecture, physics and much more.”
Anderson describes her brand of engineering as “peace engineering” — engineering that is focused on working with local communities to develop sustainable, positive solutions to some of the most significant problems facing our global community.
She brought this philosophy to her projects with Barrett, The Honors College, particularly in her work with the GlobalResolve team. This opportunity allowed her to travel to Kenya to work on a community-oriented engineering partnership. She also had the chance to study abroad in Germany and Switzerland.
“It was an incredible experience that taught me so much about working with local communities to develop sustainable solutions that meet the needs of the community,” Anderson says.
Anderson’s service projects also include roles as a section lead for a NASA Psyche mission senior capstone project to develop a robotic asteroid explorer and Engineering Projects in Community Service team lead for the native reptiles in-tank misting system for the Phoenix Zoo.
A born leader, Anderson has been a Fulton Ambassador since her first year and finished out her senior year as president of the organization.
“This has been a fantastic way for me to share my love of engineering and unique approach to the field with others while giving back to the Fulton Schools community,” Anderson says. “I am thankful to have had this opportunity to help guide the organization, as well as grow as a leader and team player.”
Anderson plans to continue her “peace engineering” mission as a controls engineer with W. L. Gore & Associates in Phoenix. In the next few years, she hopes to earn her master’s degree and either join the Peace Corps or work for an NGO or nonprofit.