Grove School graduating senior Michael Vera wins National GEM Fellowship

Already accepted to several top graduate schools including Stanford and Columbia, Michael Vera of The City College of New York’s Class of 2021 is the winner of a highly competitive GEM Fellowship that offers funding for a master's program in structural engineering at New York University

GEM fellowships fund master's and PhDs in engineering for underrepresented students of exceptional quality who intend to work in industry.  Each year, GEM identifies and recruits more than 1,000 undergraduate students, graduate students, and working professionals for admission to advanced degree programs at the nation’s top universities. The National GEM Consortium’s combination of graduate study and field-related internships make GEM fellows more marketable and more competitive upon graduation.

Queens resident Vera is a first-generation college student graduating from City College’s Grove School of Engineering with a BE in civil engineering and numerous honors. 

The GEM Fellowship caps an outstanding four years at CCNY for Vera, who worked more than 20 hours a week during his studies. His other national accolades include the National Association of Minority Contractors Scholarship, the Deep Foundation Institute's Educational Trust Scholarship and the Moles Scholarship.

In addition, Vera, who is graduating magna cum laude and #1 in his class, spent summer 2019 as a Research Fellow at Toyohashi University of Technology, in Toyohashi, Japan. There he participated in research using structural dynamics knowledge to quantify the seismic effect an earthquake acceleration has on different structural models. 

Naresh Devineni, associate professor, civil engineering in the Grove School, described Vera’s CCNY experience as an “incredible journey” defined by hard work and success.” He lauded Vera for giving back to CCNY. This includes tutoring SEEK students in math and engineering related courses. 

Vera is the fourth Grove School student to receive a GEM Fellowship in the past three years. Wendy Fernandez was named a Fellow in 2019 and Lizzette Salmeron, and Harold Gamarro were 2020 recipients.  

About the City College of New York
Since 1847, The City College of New York has provided a high-quality and affordable education to generations of New Yorkers in a wide variety of disciplines. CCNY embraces its position at the forefront of social change. It is ranked #1 by the Harvard-based Opportunity Insights out of 369 selective public colleges in the United States on the overall mobility index. This measure reflects both access and outcomes, representing the likelihood that a student at CCNY can move up two or more income quintiles. In addition, the Center for World University Rankings places CCNY in the top 1.8% of universities worldwide in terms of academic excellence. Labor analytics firm Emsi puts at $1.9 billion CCNY’s annual economic impact on the regional economy (5 boroughs and 5 adjacent counties) and quantifies the “for dollar” return on investment to students, taxpayers and society. At City College, more than 16,000 students pursue undergraduate and graduate degrees in eight schools and divisions, driven by significant funded research, creativity and scholarship. CCNY is as diverse, dynamic and visionary as New York City itself. View CCNY Media Kit.

Jay Mwamba
p: 212.650.7580
View CCNY Media Kit.