One Thousand Days Transformed - The Campaign for Cedarville

by Cara Groves, Student Public Relations Writer

The success of an academic program can largely be determined by graduation rates, rankings and professors, but the true measure of success resides in the students.  

For students in Cedarville University’s mechanical engineering program, success is no anomaly, and this year is no different. Already, the class of 2024 from the school of engineering is boasting graduates who will work at some of the nation’s leading companies, including Honda, General Dynamics and Procter & Gamble.  

“Employers are impressed with how hands-on the school of engineering is,” said Jeff Reep, director of career services at Cedarville. “Students at Cedarville are ‘book smart,’ but they also have relevant experience that employers value.”  

The engineering program has grown exponentially since it began in 1990. Students from across the country are choosing Cedarville for their degree because they know the program is a faith-based, quality education that will equip them to enter the workforce. 


And, according to Reep, this year’s graduating class has a larger-than-normal number of students signing employment contracts with more prestigious companies before they graduate.   Dr. Tim Norman talks with WKRC TV reporter Liz Bonis about a project that began with mechanical engineering students.

This year, engineering students have accepted jobs with the leading engineering companies in America, including nine at Northrop Grumman and six at Honda. In addition, three students have contracts with Naval Information Warfare Center, two will join Procter & Gamble, L-3 Harris and the National Air and Space Intelligence Center.  

Tim Junker, a mechanical engineering student from Detroit, Michigan, will begin his career at Honda after graduation. From a young age, Junker wanted to follow in his father’s footsteps and become a mechanical engineer.  

“I have always wanted to work with engines specifically. When I was 12, I opened my own small engine repair shop,” Junker said. “I’ve been invested in the small engines category for most of my life.”  

Since he first started his repair shop, Junker’s love for engines has only grown. And now, he will combine his passion with his career, working in Anna, Ohio as a quality engineer for one of the leading automotive manufacturers.  

Another mechanical engineering student, Connor Hall from Pawcatuck, Connecticut, will use his degree to build submarine components — specifically electrical hole penetrators — for General Dynamics, an aerospace and naval defense contractor.  

Like Junker, Hall wanted to pursue engineering from an early age.  

“Ever since I was 6, I was really into Legos. I looked at attending Cedarville for engineering when I was in middle school,” Hall said. “Out of all the Christian schools we looked at, Cedarville, by far, had the best program for engineering.”  

Maria Smith, a senior from Lafayette, Indiana, believes Cedarville’s engineering program has been instrumental to her success.  

“On a fundamental level, Cedarville instilled in me a good work ethic and how to be a problem-solver, which is important in the engineering field,” Smith said. “Our curriculum is lab-heavy, so we have gotten a lot of hands-on experience.”  

After graduation, Smith will join the engineering team for Procter & Gamble at the Tabler Station Plant. Here, she will overlook the manufacturing line that produces Bounty dryer sheets.  

Junker, Hall and Smith all agree that Cedarville prepared them extensively for their future. The three students are eager to begin their careers and make a positive difference in the workforce after they graduate in May.  

Located in southwest Ohio, Cedarville University is a Baptist university with undergraduate programs in arts, sciences, and professional programs, and graduate programs. With an enrollment of 5,456 students in 175 areas of study, Cedarville is one of the largest private universities in Ohio and is recognized nationally for its authentic Christian community, rigorous academic programs, such as the Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering, and high graduation and retention rates. For more information about the university, visit    


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