Chicago Engineers Foundation of the Union League Club

Empowering Chicago's Future Engineers

aka Chicago Engineers Foundation   |   Chicago, IL   |  www.chicagoengineersfoundation.org

Mission

The mission of the Chicago Engineers' Foundation is to encourage and empower young people to become the next generation of engineers through scholarship opportunities, outreach to educational institutions, and promoting interest in engineering careers.

Ruling year info

1965

Executive Director

Debbie Birrell

Main address

65 W Jackson Blvd

Chicago, IL 60604 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

36-6109433

NTEE code info

Youth Development Programs (O50)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Chicago Engineers' Foundation (CEF) seeks to empower the next generation of engineers with the tools they need to succeed in college and beyond. CEF encourages young people to learn and ask questions early on about the engineering sector via K-12 outreach initiatives. In addition, the Incentive Award scholarship program provides monetary support as engineering students work diligently through their college courses. Further, the Student Success Initiative provides career development resources to college students to ensure they are building their professional presence and network throughout their college years and as they start their engineering careers.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Incentive Awards for Aspiring Engineers

The Incentive Award program provides scholarship award opportunities for graduating high school students who live or go to high school in the city of Chicago and plan to study engineering in college. The program also provides renewed support to engineering students who continue to qualify for annual awards. CEF may provide up to $5,600 during a student's four-year college career

Population(s) Served
Adolescents
Students

The Student Outreach program matches engineering professionals with schools and community organizations seeking to present STEM concepts to K-12 students. CEF volunteers facilitate presentations about engineering careers and also participate in youth STEM fairs, career fairs, scholarship events and other engineering-related activities for Chicago students.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth
Students

The Student Success career development program offers Incentive Award recipients opportunities to build their professional presence as they matriculate through their college studies. Programming includes resume evaluations, mock interview sessions, mentoring activities, networking opportunities, corporate tours and more to help Incentive Award recipients achieve their engineering career goals.

Population(s) Served
Young adults
Students

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of students who receive scholarship funds and/or tuition assistance

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Young adults

Related Program

Incentive Awards for Aspiring Engineers

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Holding steady

Context Notes

In 2021, CEF was able to modestly increase every scholarship award to provide nearly $100,000 in awards, and give each student the opportunity to receive $5,600 in awards over four years of college.

Total dollar amount of scholarship awarded

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Young adults

Related Program

Incentive Awards for Aspiring Engineers

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Awardees may apply for renewed awards annually over 4 years of study, totaling $5,600 (an increase in 2021). CEF's awardee retention rate continues to climb each year and is at 90%.

Total number of volunteer hours contributed to the organization

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Children and youth, Adolescents

Related Program

Student Outreach

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Annually CEF volunteers visit schools and organizations across Chicago to speak about engineering careers and STEM concepts, now impacting over 1,500 K-12 students each year.

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

The goals of the Chicago Engineers' Foundation (CEF) are to provide support and resources to every aspiring engineering student in Chicago. CEF seeks to be the organization students look to as they work towards a career in engineering. In addition, CEF hopes to continue to grow as a network for students, educators, and engineering professionals.

The strategies CEF is using to achieve our goals include expanding opportunities to reach out to young people interested in engineering concepts. The outreach and scholarship award programs are poised to reach neighborhoods across Chicago, including under-represented neighborhoods and students. Further, we are increasing our volunteer offerings to include more opportunities for those in the engineering field to get involved in the community. In addition, CEF is reaching out to professional associations and interested community groups to identify opportunities for partnership activities.

Chicago Engineers' Foundation embarked on its first 5-year strategic plan in 2017. The initiatives outlined in the plan are directly aligned with the organization's goals and overall mission focus. The first four years of the plan have already exceeded expectations with many initiatives underway, and more in development for the coming years. The plan has overwhelming support from the organization's leadership and community. In addition, the organization has an enthusiastic and growing volunteer base, and a working Board of Directors dedicated to achieving our goals and ensuring the long-term stability of the Chicago Engineers' Foundation.

The first four years of the Chicago Engineer's Foundation strategic plan have been promising and helped the organization grow in my many ways. The organization debuted several new initiatives for our Incentive Award recipients including corporate tours, career development workshops and an internship resume exchange. In addition, CEF leaders are actively working with both professional associations and community groups on developing partnership activities aimed at expanding outreach to more young people interested in engineering careers. Further, the CEF student outreach program saw incredible growth, going from 20 visits each year to more than 30 K-12 outreach activities, impacting 1,500 students. A growing base of professionals are volunteering their time to reach out to young people at schools and community events throughout the metropolitan area, with plans in place to continue to expand opportunities to inspire young people about all the engineering sector has to offer.

The 2021 academic year was challenging for a variety of reasons with the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, but Chicago Engineers' Foundation took all student and volunteer activities virtual. CEF's new virtual programs have increased opportunities for K-12 outreach, learning activities, and career development for Chicago students. More than 100 active volunteers are facilitating career discussions, networking opportunities, one-on-one mentoring, and other activities to continue to inspire young minds and support college students when they need it the most.

Virtual activities are continuing into 2022, with plans in place to continue online student opportunities going forward, with a combination of in-person interactions when mitigations allow.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • Who are the people you serve with your mission?

    The people served by the Chicago Engineers Foundation mission include K-12 students, college students, and engineering professionals.

  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Electronic surveys (by email, tablet, etc.), Focus groups or interviews (by phone or in person),

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals,

  • What significant change resulted from feedback?

    A recent change made in response to feedback is the creation of the career resources programming. That program was established in 2017 and was created by volunteers and students to better serve the program recipients. Now, in addition to scholarship awards, college students have access to peer and professional networking, mentoring, career resources like resume evaluations and mock interview sessions, as well as assistance with internship placement. These resources help award recipients, as well as other college students, build their professional network and presence while pursuing their undergraduate degrees.

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • How has asking for feedback from the people you serve changed your relationship?

    Asking for, and receiving feedback, has made Chicago Engineers Foundation a better organization. It has changed how we serve our constituents and improved our programming. It's also improved relationships between the organization's various stakeholders, offering program recipients and other stakeholders access to ask questions, offer suggestions, and truly improve the programming that helps the organization work towards mission fulfillment.

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

Chicago Engineers Foundation of the Union League Club
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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Chicago Engineers Foundation of the Union League Club

Board of directors
as of 02/22/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Rebecca Wingate

Cambridge Systematics

Term: 2020 - 2020

Erik Cempel

Cempel International Consulting

Rebecca Wingate

Cambridge Systematics

Michael Driscoll

USG

John Liston

Serra International

Stephen Schlegel

Stephen J. Schlegel, Ltd.

Sid Bennett

Brinks Gilson

Patrick Burns

Greer, Burns, & Crain

Sharon Harmsworth

TTX

Deborah Hodges

Golden Square

Lisa Kennedy

Tompkins

Michael Lev

TranSystems

Andrew Levenfeld

Levenfeld & Assoc.

Cosmin Lucaci

Brownson, Rehmus & Foxworth

Thomas Penn

Cardiac Science Corporation

Thomas Riley

Riley Intellectual Property

Kelsey Watterworth

Jacobs Engineering

P. Kay Whitlock

Christopher B. Burke Engineering

Joseph Avram

Primera Engineers

Erin Sibley

Mott McDonald

Courtney Murtaugh

CBM

Tom Szucs

Cargill

Virginia McGann

Value Management Resources

Kevin Banks, Jr.

Covidien

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? Yes
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? Yes

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 1/28/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

No data

Race & ethnicity

No data

Gender identity

No data

 

No data

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data