In May 2017, alumnus Thomas Bugel (ChemE’55) sent the College of Engineering a remarkable treasure—a historic medallion he obtained while attending Carnegie Institute of Technology. The medallion, engraved and signed by V.D. Brenner—you may know him as the sculptor who designed the U.S. Lincoln penny—commemorates the dedication of a new building to the Engineering Societies, courtesy of none other than our founder, Andrew Carnegie himself.
Bugel was unaware of the medallion’s significance when he found the artifact on campus, but for the next six decades, the medallion would act as a memento of his time at Carnegie Tech: “the best two years of college I ever spent,” says Bugel. Though much remains a mystery about the medallion—such as the means by which it arrived on campus, seeing as it was commissioned to commemorate the construction of the Engineering Societies’ Building and Engineers’ Club, erected in New York City in 1907—its significance to Bugel is clear. A reminder of his years at Carnegie Tech, Bugel thought of the beautifully carved 2”x3” copper rectangle as a good luck charm, carrying him throughout his long career in plastics, automotives, and environmental education.
Says Bugel: “It’s small, but it carries a lot of weight.”