ACE Mentor Program of America Celebrates 20th Anniversary and Founder
NEW YORK, NY The ACE (Architecture, Construction, Engineering) Mentor Program of America, America's top workforce development organization encouraging youth to pursue STEM-related careers, announces a well-attended luncheon event was held in Manhattan, the birthplace of the organization, to celebrate its 20th Anniversary and founder, Charles H. Thornton, Ph.D., P.E., Hon. AIA, Hon. ASCE. After 20 years of growth, $12-plus million in scholarship awards, and 40,000-plus students provided with opportunities to prepare for college and beyond, ACE continues to expand.
"On the 20th anniversary of ACE's founding, the ACE Mentor Program is thriving, a grand testament to Charlie Thornton," said Thomas Gilbane, Jr., Chairman of the Board, ACE Mentor Program, and Chairman & CEO, Gilbane, Inc. "ACE attracts growing numbers of students to its 35-40-hour after-school program who want to reach beyond textbooks and understand real world applications of their studies; scores of ACE alumni have returned to it as mentors."
ACE founder and current Honorary Chair, Charles (Charlie) Thornton is one of the world's preeminent Structural Engineers and Educators. Co-chairman of Thornton Tomasetti until 2004, Thornton's been involved in the design, construction, and analysis of billions of dollars worth of projects worldwide; his award-winning work has set industry standards for innovative thinking and creativity. Spanning decades, Thornton's numerous awards and distinctions include the Benjamin Franklin Medal in Civil Engineering (2004), and Outstanding Projects and Leaders Lifetime Achievement Award (2013). However, he counts amongst his proudest achievements the creation of ACE and the thousands of young lives he's affected, initially leveraging the support of Thornton Thomasetti offices, then other companies he founded, all of which also sponsored ACE.
"Today ACE is a national organization powered by 2,500-plus industry professionals who mentor and annually engage more than 8,000 students," said Jack Kalavritinos, President and CEO, ACE Mentor Program. "Further, results from two ACE studies in 2015 show 98.6 percent of ACE high school seniors graduate from high school vs. the national average of 80 percent, and 70 percent of college-bound ACE seniors major in architecture, engineering or construction management."
"Survey results reveal the depth of work established by Charlie Thornton and validate the important work ACE is doing through its extensive network of affiliates and mentors across the U.S.," said Tony Guzzi, ACE Vice-Chairman of the Board, and President and CEO, EMCOR Group, Inc. "The data helps define the immense value of this unique program for high school students, many of whom might not otherwise pursue a college education and enter our industry."