Student Profile

Sydney Gallo

BS, Environmental Engineering, May 2023

Sydney Gallo working in a lab with a fellow scientist.
“It is so important to enjoy our beautiful world, and do what we can to leave it better than we found it. ”
Sydney Gallo, undergraduate student
Environmental engineering

Where are you from?

Rochester, N.Y.

Why did you choose UB?

I fell in love with UB’s engineering program! UB, as a research university, has so many opportunities for students to gain hands on experience on campus - whether that be by working with a professor, or utilizing the school's off campus connections!

Why did you decide to go into engineering?

I wanted to go into engineering because I love how the field allows you to apply your knowledge, creativity, and experiences to problem solving. More than that, I
want my work to make a difference one day, big or small!

Why did you choose to join UB Engineers for a Sustainable World (ESW)?

I joined ESW last year, after having online classes the previous year, in order to meet new people and get more involved on campus! It is truly one of the best decisions I have ever made in my college career. Not only was I given the opportunity to lead a project myself, but I also made so many new friends and have had so many fun experiences!  

What do you like most about being a part of ESW?

More than anything, I love the people! Everyone in ESW is so passionate about using their skills to better their community. ESW revolves around many student-led, sustainability focused projects every year, and it’s so amazing to see just how much these project teams can accomplish!

What are you working on right now?

This year, ESW has four student led projects!

Our Pollinator Garden and Tree Planting group is focusing on expanding the pollinator garden that ESW built last year on the north shores of Lake LaSalle (near the ooze fest fields) and planting trees around campus.

The ESW Project Revival team is working on fixing and rehoming some of our many old ESW projects, like our solar powered phone charging umbrella, our self-sustaining aquaponics system, and on our campus solar bench.

Our Solar District Cup team is working on their submission for the Department of Energy’s annual Solar District Cup competition, of which we have placed in the top 5 teams nationally in previous years.

Finally, our Battlebots team is building our ESW battlebot for UB’s yearly battlebot competition during E-week!

What have you done that you are most proud of?

This is hard to pick! I am so proud of ESW, and truly honored to have been elected president this year! In relation to this, I think my proudest moment so far was being chosen as a UB sustainability leader to meet Vice President Kamala Harris during her visit to UB to speak on the Inflation Reduction Act. It was truly incredible to speak about sustainability and my research with the Vice President herself, especially as she unveiled such a monumental climate action bill.

What are you passionate about?

Sustainability, nature, and our planet as a whole! It is so important to enjoy our beautiful world, and do what we can to leave it better than we found it.

Has there been a particular faculty or staff member that has been especially influential during your time at UB?

Dr. Ian Bradley has been a truly fantastic mentor during my time at UB. I first took an introductory Environmental Engineering course with him, in which we learned basic lab skills and conducted tests on Lake LaSalle. As the class came to an end, I asked to join his research, and he gave me a job on UB’s COVID wastewater surveillance project!

I have learned so much in the past year on this project and am so thankful that Dr. Bradley has given me so much hands-on experience. He has inspired me to pursue a master’s degree in my field, and showed me how engaging and exciting research can be!

What are your future plans?

As stated above, I hope to pursue a masters degree through UB’s EWRE program. Otherwise, I love research and hope to one day further pursue lab work, or try my hand at environmental consulting as a career.

What is your advice for prospective students?

My advice for prospective students would be to get involved on campus! It can be nerve wracking to join a club, research project, or other on-campus activity, but I can promise that it is so worth it! It may sound cliché, but getting involved and taking the leap is the best thing I have ever done in the past (nearly) four years.