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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


Dante W. Spieker

Dante W. Spieker Dante W. Spieker

Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological eEngineering
Sustainable Systems Management 
Cygnet, OH 

2023 Distinguished Senior Award Recognition Reception Program (.pdf) 

2023 Distinguished Senior Award Recipient Reception Poster (.pdf) 

As a Trip Leader for Buck-I-SERV, a service-based student organization, Dante Spieker led fellow Buckeyes on two environmental restoration trips. As a freshman, Dante led the group’s efforts in Biloxi, MS; two years later, he would lead a trip to Fajardo, PR. 
Dante recalled having little experience leading students, let alone leading a large group on a service excursion, when he volunteered his freshman year. Dante would also participate in the Office of Resident Life’s R-LEAD program. In addition to helping him feel connected to the OSU community, these practical leadership experiences gave Dante a clear portrait of what it takes to be an effective leader. This paved the way for his future as a leader and mentor when he transitioned from Engineering into the Construction Systems Management (CSM) program his second year at OSU.

Once he settled on the CSM program, Dante took advantage of several opportunities to serve, lead, and connect with his fellow students. He joined CSM Club, serving first as Secretary and eventually as President, and helped rebuild the club’s presence on campus which had diminished during the recent pandemic. Dante also worked as a Teaching Assistant for classes within the major. Both experiences pushed him outside his comfort zone and allowed Dante to stand as a role model for underclassmen. In the process, he learned about the construction industry, the university, and about himself. Dante reflected, “I cannot imagine that I would have enjoyed my time at Ohio State as much as I have if I was not given this opportunity to be an integral part of the CSM major.”

His internship at Whiting-Turner’s Energy Advancement and Innovation Center at Carmenton—OSU’s new Innovation District on west campus—offered Dante a more complete understanding of the construction industry by giving him the opportunity to 
work on-site each day at ongoing projects. Dante worked closely with project managers, superintendents, foremen, and workers daily, and he witnessed and contributed to the continual progress of construction projects. The warm welcome and sense of belonging he experienced as an intern was only the beginning, as he received an offer for full-time employment following graduation. 

Dante would like to recognize Jeff Suchy as his mentor. Dante shares, “After a full year in mechanical engineering, I realized I had no passion for it and wanted to find a major that truly felt like home. Somehow in all the confusion of COVID, I landed in CSM and Jeff saw my potential after taking his Materials and Methods II course. He hired me as a teaching assistant in March 2021, and I have enjoyed working with him every semester since then. Jeff has not only helped me become a better teaching assistant, but he has provided so much advice and encouragement in every aspect of my academic career and future career in construction.”

A first-generation college student, Dante begins his professional career with WhitingTurner this summer. In the long term, his professional goals are to pursue residential construction projects and eventually non-profit work. 

Service, involvement, and accolades: Construction Systems Management Club, secretary, president | Buck-I-SERV, trip leader | R-LEAD Program

Dante Spieker - Press Release