Central Piedmont Community College (CPCC) will present Alain S. Miatudila Sr., faculty/research operations manager for the Department of Engineering Technology and Construction Management at UNC-Charlotte, with the 2013 Richard H. Hagemeyer Educational Advancement Award at its traditional spring commencement ceremony on May 16 at Bojangles’ Coliseum. The award recognizes a former CPCC student who has significantly benefited from experiences at CPCC and whose efforts have helped the community.
A native of the Democratic Republic of Congo, Miatudila arrived in the United States as a refugee in 1996 with aspirations of studying civil engineering. He did not speak English. After taking a full-time job as a cashier at a Handy Pantry gas station, he realized he would need to learn English to overcome the language barrier he was experiencing with customers. An opportunity to attend free, English as a Second Language (ESL) classes at CPCC presented itself; Miatudila immediately enrolled.
After completing the ESL classes at CPCC, Miatudila continued to work on his English through everyday conversation. Despite having limited English language abilities, he applied to CPCC in 1998 and was admitted as a student in the college’s Civil Engineering Technology program. He was 28 years old. With the assistance of CPCC instructors, many of whom he today considers his mentors, Miatudila graduated from CPCC in 2001 with a degree in Civil Engineering Technology.
He transferred to UNC-Charlotte, where he graduated in the top 10 percent of his class with a bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering Technology. Over the next seven years, he secured civil engineering positions with a variety of companies in the Charlotte region, including Cooper Environmental, Inc., Persis-Nova Construction, Co., and R. Joe Harris & Associates, P.L.L.C., and earned his master’s degree in Civil Engineering from UNC-Charlotte. Today, Miatudila teaches in the department of Civil Engineering Technology and Construction Management at UNC-Charlotte and performs research in transportation engineering, focusing on highway, traffic and human factors.
In addition to being an instructor at UNC-Charlotte, he is currently a student, taking classes toward a doctorate degree in Infrastructure and Environmental Systems at UNC-Charlotte. He remains active in his industry and the local community, serving as a member of the Institute of Transportation Engineers, the American Society of Civil Engineers, the Congolese Community of Charlotte and his church.
In his spare time, he can be found in CPCC’s Admissions Office, encouraging today’s young adults to attend the college where he built his academic foundation.
“I find it a privilege to teach and mentor students. There is no limit on the amount one can learn,” says Miatudila. “When I look at the accomplishments I have achieved to date, coming from a Third World war- torn country to having to learn English as an adult, I am proud of the hard work I put in. I am thankful for God, the support of my wife Ma-lkay, our children Grace and Alain Jr., and for the opportunity and foundation I received at CPCC. Attending CPCC helped me become successful in my professional and personal life.”
A scholarship will be granted to a CPCC student enrolled in the College’s Civil Engineering Technology program – the area of study that most closely reflects Miatudila’s background.
The award honors Dr. Richard H. Hagemeyer, CPCC president for 23 years, who led the college from a trade school with 1,200 students to the state’s largest community college. Previous award winners include Elaine Lyerly, Gary Mims, Ronald Caldwell, Sheriff Jim Pendegraph, Dr. Margaret Stanley Hagan, Paul Griffin, James White, Joe Weatherford, Chief Luther Fincher, Dr. Kenny Welch, Frances Queen, Richard Zollinger, Stanley Law, Cindy Castano, Fabi Preslar, James Taylor Jr., James E. Rogers and David L. Howard.