March 13, 2009

LSU’s Department of Mechanical Engineering (ME) hosted LSU alumnus and OAO Technology Solutions, Inc. president and CEO Sidney E. Fuchs as the first speaker of its Alumni Achievement Lecture Series on Friday, March 13. Fuchs’s talk was titled “Navigating the Future & Managing Your Career: What You Won’t Learn in School.”

Fuchs provided his perspectives and insights on lessons he has learned throughout his career, geared toward helping students avoid career traps, improve marketable skills and achieve success in the future. His presentation focused on what is needed to build a successful career from the first position held post-graduation and progressing to a managerial or leadership role with increased responsibility.

“How do responsibilities change through your career,” Fuchs asked the audience. “You need to evolve and reinvent yourself. As you move up the career ladder, you must pick up new skills and shift your focus to expand your skill set,” stated Fuchs.

Fuchs also advised that “Business is about people. As engineers, we tend to forget the ‘people’ variable, and if you forget – you will pay the price.” Fuchs continued “Your LSU mechanical engineering education is a license to learn and will be a powerful tool that provides the ability to problem solve. As you get older, give back to your alma mater. Never forget where you came from.”

ME Interim Chair Dimitris Nikitopoulos remarked, ”Sid is one of our most valued alumni and friends. He offered the ME family a lucid and motivating account of what it takes to succeed in leading, using the ME degree as a ‘license to learn’ for a lifetime.”

Fuchs holds a bachelor’s and master’s degree in mechanical engineering from LSU and is a member of the department’s Industrial Advisory Board. He is a former Central Intelligence Agency officer, a one-time senior executive with Northrop Grumman, and holds federal appointments to the National Defense University’s Board of Visitors, and the Defense Science Board’s Permanent Task Force on Intelligence. For more information on Fuchs, visit

Article excerpted from LSU Public Affairs News Release, Ashley Berthelot, LSU Media Relations, 225-578-5706,


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