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Bridge Builder

AUTHOR: Nina Welding

PUBLISHED: August 7, 2019

Christian Dennis chose to study engineering because he is very good at math and science. However, he picked civil engineering — with a concentration in structural engineering — as his major because it was the degree with which he felt he could do the most good.

For example, the infrastructure required to design and build cities and roadways is similar to the groundwork he lays every time he volunteers at local organizations, participates in Campus Ministry, or spends time with his classmates.

It is both the time he invests and the work he is doing that is making a difference in people's lives.

In fact, between serving at Holy Cross retirement home, the local homeless shelter, and the South Bend Historical Society — not to mention planting local rain gardens, participating in community clean-ups, and fighting as a Bengal Bouts boxer, it's hard to imagine that Dennis has had any time to study or develop close-knit friendships with his classmates and those he serves. 

Still he has accomplished all that and more, including singing in the Liturgical Choir and playing several intramural sports. He also works with Right to Life on end-of-life issues. He has even spent a summer abroad, studying engineering in Dublin.

But his best memories have been praying at the Grotto with friends and singing the Alma Mater ... anywhere, any time. “For me, those moments epitomize what the Notre Dame family is,” he says.

Dennis plans to spend the summer immediately after he graduates building a bridge in Latin America with ND-SEED and then hopes to join a national engineering firm as a structural engineer.