ESM alumna receives Early Career Recognition Award


UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. – Abby Dodson (’12 E SC), product engineer-seating at Lear Corporation, was recently named the Fall 2018 Engineering Science and Mechanics (ESM) Early Career Recognition Award recipient.

The ESM Early Career Recognition Award recognizes alumni who graduated in the past 10 years who have distinguished themselves at work, in academia and/or in their community.

Dodson was a founding member of the Lear Young Professionals group that engages Lear’s younger employees with networking opportunities within the company and surrounding community, and with personal and professional development opportunities. The group also provides outreach to local communities.

As a board member of Lear Young Professionals, Dodson interacts with senior leadership and new recruits, and has established a new level of dialog among various generations in the company. She is currently the group’s communications manager and served as secretary from 2015 to 2017.

Since graduating from Penn State, Dodson has been an active volunteer at the University. She has been a member of the Penn State ESM Alumni Society Board since 2012, and is president of the Penn State Engineering Leadership Alumni Society (PSELAS), the Penn State Alumni Association’s affiliate program group for alumni of the Engineering Leadership Development Minor. As president of PSELAS, a position she has held for the last four years, Dodson represents the society within the Penn State Engineering Alumni Society (PSEAS).

As a volunteer in the Penn State Alumni Admissions Volunteer Program, she represents the University at local college fairs in place of admissions staff in Southeast Michigan. She has also served as a Penn State Schreyer Honors College admissions interviewer since 2012.

In 2017, Dodson received the PSEAS Young Alumni Achievement Award, which recognizes engineering alumni 35 years of age and younger for their extraordinary professional accomplishments.

In her current role at Lear, Dodson is working on the next generation full-size SUV for General Motors—designing, validating and supporting builds for the second row seats, which are built in Arlington, Texas. 

Dodson, who resides in Commerce Township, Michigan, is currently pursuing an M.B.A. and M.S.E. in industrial and systems engineering at the University of Michigan-Dearborn. She will graduate in August of this year.


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Chris Spallino

Abby Dodson, Fall 2018 Early Career Award Winner

Abby Dodson (’12 E SC), Fall 2018 Engineering Science and Mechanics Early Career Recognition Award winner



The Penn State Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics (ESM) is an internationally distinguished department that is recognized for its globally competitive excellence in engineering and scientific accomplishments, research, and educational leadership.

Our Engineering Science program is the official undergraduate honors program of the College of Engineering, attracting the University’s brightest engineering students. We also offer graduate degrees in ESM, engineering mechanics, engineering at the nano-scale, and an integrated undergraduate/graduate program.

Department of Engineering Science and Mechanics

212 Earth and Engineering Sciences Building

The Pennsylvania State University

University Park, PA 16802

Phone: 814-865-4523