North Central College alumnus Paul Roots ’07, a civil engineering student at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), was named a 2011 Udall Scholar for his commitment to the environment, leadership potential and academic achievement. Roots majored in music and jazz studies at North Central.
The Udall Foundation is an independent federal agency that was established by Congress in 1992 to provide federally funded scholarships for college students intending to pursue careers related to the environment, as well as to Native American students pursuing tribal policy or health care careers. In April, the Udall Foundation selected 80 students from 61 colleges and universities as its 2011 Udall Scholars, awarding scholarships up to $5,000.
After graduation from North Central, Roots joined the AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps in 2008. During a post-flood levee restoration project along the Mississippi River, he was struck by the fragility of both the earth and the built environment, as well as the critical role engineers play in people’s safety and livelihood. Roots plans to become a voice for positive environmental action within the engineering community.