Nicholas Chiapputo stands while holding his awardNicholas Chiapputo, a graduate student in the Department of Electrical Engineering, recently received the IEEE R5 Outstanding Individual Achievement Award – a recognition more commonly awarded to IEEE members who are established within their careers.

Throughout his tenure with IEEE UNT, Chiapputo has served as the corresponding secretary for the IEEE HKN Honor Society and helped coordinate multiple outreach initiatives. He also served as the webmaster for two years.

Chiapputo propelled the IEEE Robotics and Automation Society at UNT, an organization that hosted multiple virtual workshops throughout the pandemic. The workshops included lessons on Linux, Python, and microcontrollers.

"These workshops were so good that I sent my entire class to the Intro to Python workshop," said Colleen Bailey, electrical engineering assistant professor and IEEE UNT advisor who nominated Chiapputo for the award.

Chiapputo also spearheaded the IEEE Future Innovators Workshop, which virtually taught K-12 students about circuits and coding a microcontroller. The event required fundraising for, purchasing and assembling electronics kits that could be mailed out to the participating students.

"Nick did the majority of the work creating these workshops, and we ended up with 85 participants," said Bailey. "The event was so successful, we’re going to do it twice a year now."

And, finally, Chiapputo also helped out with IEEE North Tech-SAS, an annual event that brings students and industry professionals together to talk about the future of electrical engineering.

"Nick created the virtual environment for the event and also set up the server… twice. When the winter storm hit Texas, the server was flooded and Nick had to set up another," said Bailey. "His willingness and ability to adapt really shows off his resilience and dedication to IEEE UNT, IEEE and the department."

Chiapputo also received the department’s Student Engagement Award for his academic achievements and service to the department and university.

"The award was created last fall and really signifies those students who have truly gone above and beyond," said Bailey. "Nick was the first student to receive it; he’s really one of the most impressive students we have in the electrical engineering department. No one had really done as much to contribute to UNT as much as him."