The nationally renowned consultancy in acoustical, audiovisual, IT and security design, Cerami & Associates Inc. has announced that it awarded a $10,000 scholarship, for the second time annually, to Vida Ekhlas through the ACE Mentor Program of Greater New York, as part of the firm’s 50th anniversary commemorations.
The scholarship is given in honor of renowned engineer Vito Cerami, a well-regarded mentor to the industry and founder of Cerami & Associates. He was also the father of the firm’s current CEO, Victoria J. Cerami, who sits on the ACE 2015-2016 New York board of directors. When Ms. Cerami first announced the scholarship fund last year, ACE’s leadership, described it as “the largest amount awarded to any single student in ACE history.”
This year’s Vito V. Cerami Scholarship was presented to Vida Ekhlas at the ACE Mentor Program’s 20th Annual Scholarship Luncheon at New York’s Mandarin Oriental. A first-generation Iranian-American, Vida will be pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering at Carnegie Mellon beginning in the fall.
“In celebration of our firm’s 50th anniversary, and in honor of my father who mentored so many in the industry, we are proud to have established the Vito V. Cerami Scholarship which is dedicated to helping young women pursuing an education in mechanical engineering,” says Victoria Cerami. “Vida’s spirit, energy and commitment to learning and helping others is what my Dad was all about. She is a wonderful person to carry on his legacy.”
Vito Cerami was a first generation Italian-American and U.S. Army veteran who attended Pratt Institute on the G.I. Bill, earning a degree in mechanical engineering. Through his work, Cerami developed a niche in vibration control and his expertise positioned him to start his own firm, Cerami & Associates Inc., in 1965.
During its first two decades under Vito’s leadership, the firm helped advance many techniques for noise and vibration control now used in the design and construction of modern commercial and residential buildings. Among Cerami’s most high-profile projects were the World Trade Center, One Penn Plaza, and the World Financial Center in New York City and the Willis Tower (formerly Sears Tower) in Chicago.