ESC Ad-Chairs Introductions

POSTED ON: September 7, 2021

Ky Yurchuk CE’23

Image of Ky Yurchuk CE’23

Joshua Kitagorsky CE’22

Image of Joshua Kitagorsky CE’22

Sanjna Rao ChE’22

Image of Sanjna Rao ChE’22

The Engineering Student Council (ESC) represents and operates in the best interests of the students at the Albert Nerken School of Engineering. The Council is administered by three administrative chairs (ad-chairs) and each spring, elections are held to select three new ad-chairs for the upcoming school year.

The ESC ad-chairs work to facilitate the communication of thoughts and desires of the engineering school to faculty and administration. This year’s ESC ad-chairs are Ky Yurchuk CE’23, Joshua Kitagorsky CE’22, and Sanjna Rao ChE’22.

Any inquiries? Please contact them at

Ky Yurchuk CE’23

Hi! My name is Ky Yurchuk, and I am going to be a third-year civil engineering student. I can be found in numerous civil engineering clubs such as ASCE (American Society of Civil Engineers), SEAoNY (Structural Engineers Association of NY), and Steel Bridge, and if I’m not engaged in a structural engineering task, I’ll probably be off writing, watching a movie, or making a hat. 

One of the reasons I came to Cooper was because I knew the small student population would provide close relationships between students and more opportunities to work with faculty and start my own projects. However, one of the greatest benefits of the size of this school is the voice the students can have when discussing their education with faculty and administration.

The educational landscape is constantly changing, and we as students need to make sure the school changes with it. Although I do not have much experience with the ESC, I have come to appreciate the platform it provides for students to directly communicate with the deans and the president, especially at a times where we can’t physically meet with each other. 

As Ad-Chairs, we have the responsibility of keeping a line of communication with administration and students and help the two sides of pedagogy work together to keep The Cooper Union aligned with its founder’s wishes. I think that Josh, Sanjna, and I are ready to help with Cooper’s transition to in-person learning and help administration keep students’ interests in mind.

Joshua Kitagorsky CE’22

Hi! My name is Joshua Kitagorsky, I am a fourth-year civil engineering student, and will be returning to Cooper next year as a graduate student (also in Civil Engineering). This will make me the first graduate student ad-chair in recent memory, and the fourth ad-chair to come from the 15 students of CE ‘21! I am from Brooklyn, New York and have wanted to become an engineer for as long as I can remember, influenced by living in New York City and being surrounded by feats of engineering, in the form of the NYC skyline, daily. 

While I have never formally been a member of ESC, over my nearly four years at Cooper, I have regularly attended meetings which gave me an excellent understanding of how it works, what it does, and what it should do. I have held a lot of positions at Cooper, including various levels of captain in the Steel Bridge Team, president of our chapters of Chi Epsilon (Civil Engineering Honor Society), and SEAoNY, have been an RA in our residence hall for two years, and a teaching assistant for a sophomore level civil engineering class. Given all my experience and knowledge of how Cooper engineering works, I felt that I would be in a great position to help lead ESC in a period of transition where we are all going to be returning to in-person activities and relearning what it is like to not spend our entire days in front of the computer. While we all want to call it a return to normality, the reality is that we will have to adapt everything we do to the new “normal”, whatever that may look like. 

In our non-hierarchical position in ESC, it is our job to convey the wants and needs of the students to the administration and help the administration be more transparent in their actions and support the student population. It is also our job to help organize events that support the student body and help alleviate the stress that comes with being at a high-level engineering school. We regularly organize meetings with the student council who represent the entirety of the student population of the engineering school (we even got all sections represented in our last elections!) where we discuss what is important to the students, what issues need to be addressed, and what they want to see ESC do. On top of that we regularly have meetings with the deans of the engineering school and student affairs as well as with our president where we can bring to them the concerns and ideas of the students.

I am most looking forward to the challenges that will come with planning classic ESC events such as Midnight Breakfast, Book Fair, and Faculty Auction as well as helping students adjust to whatever the new normal will look like. Some of my favorite memories at Cooper occurred during these events and it would be a tragedy for them to be lost to time. On top of that there is a lot of work to be done in addressing issues such as student mental health, bringing the campus back to life, and re-introducing the student population to what life as a Cooper student is about after a year and a half of working from home. I think the new ESC ad-chairs are very well placed to tackle all these challenges head on and make sure that the coming 2021-2022 academic year is a successful one!

Sanjna Rao ChE’22

My name is Sanjna (she/her/hers) and I'm a senior chemical engineering student. I am an international student from Bangalore, India, and I moved to New York City for college in 2018. 

At Cooper, I co-lead the engineering student council as an administrative chair, work for admissions, and in the chemistry stockroom. I have been involved with the ESC since my freshman year where I was the representative for my chemical engineering class. 

During my sophomore and junior years, I was the treasurer for ESC and handled our finances and hosted events and at my last year at Cooper, I decided to be an administrative chair since I have seen and experienced how the council was run before and I wanted to incorporate everything I had learnt and observed over the past three years. I want ESC to be a space for collaboration and discussion between students and to facilitate communication between the students, staff, faculty, and administration. 

For me, ESC is an opportunity for the student body to keep up to date with the happenings that relate to how the school is run and any major changes, and to provide criticism and feedback. This academic year, I am especially excited for the return to in-person school and the ability to host our famous midnight breakfast and faculty auction!

  • Founded by inventor, industrialist and philanthropist Peter Cooper in 1859, The Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art offers education in art, architecture and engineering, as well as courses in the humanities and social sciences.

  • “My feelings, my desires, my hopes, embrace humanity throughout the world,” Peter Cooper proclaimed in a speech in 1853. He looked forward to a time when, “knowledge shall cover the earth as waters cover the great deep.”

  • From its beginnings, Cooper Union was a unique institution, dedicated to founder Peter Cooper's proposition that education is the key not only to personal prosperity but to civic virtue and harmony.

  • Peter Cooper wanted his graduates to acquire the technical mastery and entrepreneurial skills, enrich their intellects and spark their creativity, and develop a sense of social justice that would translate into action.