Evan Reilly
Evan Reilly Innovation and Virtual Design & Construction (VDC) Engineer at Skanska USA Building
Duke University, 2016, B.S.E. Civil & Architectural Engineering

"My experiences with the Grand Challenge Scholars Program at Duke have helped me deepen my understanding of the gravity of the urban infrastructure challenges we face as a society and have heightened my resolve to develop solutions for a more robust future.

As a result of my GCS experiences, I appreciate:

  • the design potential and limitations of new construction solutions
  • the interdisciplinary nature of large-scale engineering projects
  • the urgent need for innovative, holistic thinking to advance green infrastructure and healthy urban environments
  • the historical context of urban architecture
  • the value of professionalism when consulting with experts
  • the impactful legacy of urban public transportation
  • the importance of meaningful community outreach and education

It has been invigorating to be a part of a program that promotes interdisciplinary engagement and an empathetic mindset. By stepping outside of the traditional civil engineering curriculum and examining the challenge from different perspectives, I have developed a more holistic view of infrastructure – one that supports a healthy and enjoyable urban environment and reflects a balanced awareness of both function and aesthetics.

I have gained access to world-class research expertise and engaged in interdisciplinary advanced courses, entrepreneurial projects, global work experience, and service learning. The components of my Grand Challenge Scholar portfolio have provided me with a well-rounded undergraduate experience. It has also been inspiring to meet with my fellow GC Scholars at Duke to learn how their experiences have shaped their views of engineering and their personal career goals. The Program has allowed me to build a cohesive narrative for the seemingly disparate interests and activities I have pursued at Duke. This opportunity has been a highlight of my time at Duke and has impacted my future trajectory."