Unity in Sculptural Form

dean and others with Bent sculpture

On May 3, a ceremony rededicating two Tau Beta Pi Bents, one from NYU’s former University Heights campus and the other from Poly’s former Long Island campus took place at Tandon's MetroTech Center campus.

Since the official merger of NYU and Poly in 2014, we have paid tribute to that relationship in numerous ways, from holding celebratory events to forging exciting new research collaborations. On May 3, the school honored that bond in yet another way: at a joyful rededication ceremony presided over by Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering Department Chair and Vice President Emeritus Richard Thorsen, the MetroTech Center became home to two Tau Beta Pi Bents: one from NYU’s former University Heights campus and the other from Poly’s former Long Island campus.

Tau Beta Pi, founded in 1885, is the second-oldest academic honor society in the nation and the only one representing the entire engineering profession. NYU Tandon students and alumni exemplify the distinguished scholarship, stellar character, and service that the society promotes, so the two trestle-shaped Bents — the Tau Beta Pi symbol since its inception — are fitting elements for display here.

An excited group of alumni and Tau Beta Pi members gathered to watch the statues’ unveiling. Among them was Tom Maniscalco, who had earned his degree in mechanical engineering by attending night classes on the Heights campus and who now funds several annual scholarships at his various alma maters. He was proudly wearing Tau Beta Pi lapel pins, also in the form of bents.

“It’s meaningful to me to be here today, seeing the bents in this beautiful setting, and meeting young student members of the group,” he said. “This is a wonderful, lasting way to highlight the unity of the two schools and the shared experiences of all engineering alumni.”

Dean and Rich Thorsen with alumni at Bent