LIS Announces UT Martin Scholarship Recipients


Two students from the University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM) were selected as the 2024 recipients of L.I. Smith & Associates’ (LIS) Larry Isham Smith Civil Engineering Scholarship and the Lucile D. Smith Land Surveying Scholarship. The students are the inaugural recipients, as the program was established in February of this year.

“These students are the future of the industry. There is no doubt the recipients will each make a tremendous impact on the field as they enter the workforce,” remarked LIS Vice President of Marketing and Communication Ashley Horn.

The LIS scholarship program aims to recognize and support outstanding, local students who have demonstrated exceptional academic achievement and a commitment to making a positive impact in the civil engineering and land surveying fields. After a rigorous selection process involving careful review and evaluation of numerous applications, LIS was thrilled to announce Estefania Silva and Will Gallimore as the first recipients of the LIS scholarships.

Estefania Silva

Silva, who received the Larry Isham Smith Civil Engineering Scholarship, is a senior majoring in civil engineering. She is a Weakley County native, having grown up in Martin, Tenn. A dedicated student, Silva has maintained an impressive grade point average (GPA) throughout her time at the university and was encouraged by the department chair, Dr. Tim Nipp, to apply for the scholarship.

Nipp commented, “In a pool of outstanding UTM Engineering students, Steffie exemplifies hard work and results. She is very deserving of this scholarship from L. I. Smith. Upon graduation, Steffie will be a successful engineer who will make a positive contribution to the engineering world. We are honored to have our Engineering students recognized for their efforts.

After graduation, she hopes to become a senior structural engineer and gain experience leading other engineers in the workplace. Silva is an emerging leader, serving as treasurer for the local collegiate chapter of the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) and as a head coach for Martin Elite Gymnastics Academy (MEGA).

Will Gallimore 

Gallimore was awarded the Lucile D. Smith Land Surveying Scholarship and is a junior farm and ranch management major from McKenzie, Tenn. In conjunction with his chosen major, he is also pursuing the land survey certification. As a student leader on campus, Gallimore is a member of Sigma Chi Fraternity and the Cattleman’s Association, as well as a student worker on the university’s farm. He has served in multiple leadership positions within his fraternity including vice president and recruitment chair.

“Will is an outstanding young man who has a promising future as a surveyor. I am thrilled he has received this scholarship and the opportunities it provides to further his career. I know he will be a great representative for the surveying profession,” stated UTM professor, Sandy Mehlhorn.

In the future, Gallimore plans to work toward earning his professional land surveying license (PLS). To accomplish this goal, he will first take his fundamentals of surveying (FS) exam and work under the direct supervision of a licensed professional for two years. Gallimore is confident that the field of surveying will be a great fit for him, as he enjoys being outside and working with his hands.

Silva and Gallimore were awarded the scholarships at the 2024 Celebration of Generosity and Gratitude Gala hosted on March 7 at the university. The event recognized the accomplishments of the student recipients as well as the donations of local organizations and individuals in developing scholarships through partnerships with the university.

“Through the implementation of a scholarship program with UTM, we are eager to make a small impact on the collegiate experience of hardworking, local students by providing financial assistance,” commented Horn.

LIS to Provide STEM Scholarships Through Partnership with UT Martin

LIS to Provide STEM Scholarships Through Partnership with UT Martin

Through a new partnership with the University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM), L.I. Smith & Associates (LIS) is thrilled to announce the implementation of two new scholarships. The annual scholarships will be available beginning this semester, Spring 2024, and will provide financial aid to local students pursuing their education in the civil engineering and land surveying fields.

“With nearly 30% of our employees being alumni or current students, UTM has become indispensable in our pursuit of workforce development,” commented LIS President, Patrick Smith. “As the university attracts local talent to remain in the region, LIS is continuously utilizing this strategy to attract and retain local talent. I am excited to further our relationship with UTM by awarding scholarships to these students.”

The scholarships bear the name of our cofounders and were developed to highlight their esteemed legacies. The Lucile D. Smith Land Surveying Scholarship pays homage to our former president and cofounder. She was a trailblazer in the surveying field, becoming the first woman in the state of Tennessee to become a licensed surveyor by passing the state-specific examinations. This scholarship is offered annually to local students on the land surveying and geomatics track at UTM.

The Larry I. Smith Civil Engineering Scholarship will be awarded to a local student earning a four year degree in civil engineering. Larry, from whom we gained our namesake, became a Registered Land Surveyor (RLS) in Tennessee in 1975. This professional licensure marked the birth of LIS, as it provided Larry with the necessary certification to do survey work at the professional level. He went on to earn professional engineering licenses in numerous states throughout the region, which led to the implementation of the civil engineering department at LIS.

“We are excited and honored to have this partnership with L.I. Smith and Associates,” said Jeanna Swafford, UT Martin Interim Vice Chancellor for Advancement. “Scholarships are vital to our students and enable them to earn their degree with less or no debt. We are fortunate that corporations like L.I. Smith see the value in supporting higher education and the impact UT Martin graduates make on the workforce in West Tennessee and beyond.”

Each scholarship is valued at $1,000 and provides financial assistance for recipients. To qualify, students must be in good standing with the university, maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA, and be considered a sophomore, junior, or senior. Additionally, each recipient must be a native of Henry, Weakley, Carroll, or Benton Counties and will be required to job shadow with LIS once per semester.

“By launching this scholarship and requiring they job shadow with us, we hope to spur the interest of local students to the career options right here in Henry County and the surrounding area, while also providing financial support as they complete their studies,” commented LIS Vice President of Marketing and Communications, Ashley Horn.


LIS plays a Major Role in ASCE Competition at UT Martin 


Two members from the L.I. Smith and Associates surveying team, Aj Maxwell and Tyler LaPointe, were invited to visit the University of Tennessee at Martin campus in early December.   

In preparation for the annual Mid-South American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) Student Symposium surveying competition, Maxwell and LaPointe spent two days setting up a control network. This consisted of 10 metal pins being physically placed into the campus grounds at various locations. Each of the metal pens have a GPS coordinate and elevation assigned to them.   

The competition will be held April 4-6 at the UT Martin campus, and the work conducted by Maxwell and LaPointe is vital to the competition for the students. 13 ASCE Student Chapters from the Mid-South Conference Region will attend the competition. Aside from students using these pens during the ASCE competition in April 2024, UT Martin surveying students and campus staff can use them throughout the following years to collect data. The data collected throughout the years will show changes in elevation of the land and other various characteristics.   

The work LIS has done with UT Martin thus far came into fruition from LIS employee Aj Maxwell, Land Surveyor in Training, having the desire to give back to his alma mater in a professional way that other land surveying students could benefit from. LIS has 10 other employees on staff that are UT Martin alumni and 1 full-time staff member that is currently a student. LIS also currently has an intern who just graduated from UT Martin in December.   

“As a UT Martin alumna myself, and with 10 other alumni on staff as well, this is an amazing opportunity to partner with a local higher education institution that several of us came from. It feels like we’re giving back to UT Martin and we enjoy aiding in providing academic resources for future students as well.”, added Ashley Horn, Vice President of Marketing and Communications at LIS.

UT Martin Students to Develop Commemorative Logo for LIS’ 50th Anniversary 

UT Martin Students to Develop Commemorative Logo for LIS’ 50th Anniversary

Mass Media and Strategic Communication (MMSC) students from the University of Tennessee at Martin (UTM) are developing a new logo design to commemorate L.I. Smith & Associates’ (LIS) upcoming 50-year anniversary. LIS will launch the new commemorative logo when it meets the milestone in January of 2025.  

LIS President Patrick Smith and Marketing Coordinator Ashley Horn meet with students from the MMSC program today to discuss brand objectives. Students will spend the spring semester creating logo designs in Dr. Tracy Rutledge’s Advanced Media Design class. This senior-level course is project-based and includes instruction in the production of print and multimedia products. The course is offered to students in the MMSC programs who have chosen the Media Design and Digital Content Production area of study. 

“This is a great opportunity for students to understand how the real world works and see that there are opportunities outside of traditional mass communication areas such as working with a surveying and civil engineering firm. It also helps our students network and see where designers can plug into other industries,” Dr. Rutledge stated.  

Each group will develop an original primary and secondary logo, along with a strategic plan, based on LIS’ brand identity and future objectives. Each group will have the opportunity to pitch their design and reasoning later in the semester. Following the presentation, one design will ultimately be selected as LIS’ new commemorative logo.  

The collaboration between LIS and the Department of Mass Media and Strategic Communications came, in part, due to Horn’s relationship with the department. Horn is a two-time graduate of the program, having earned a bachelor’s degree in 2016 and a master’s degree in 2018. Additionally, Marketing and Communications Intern, Martha Jane (MJ) Hooper is currently enrolled in the program with a focus on Strategic Communication and Public Relations.  

“We enjoy partnering with the Department of Mass Media and Strategic Communications whenever we get the chance. The MMSC students are extremely talented, reliable, and contribute unique, innovative ideas,” stated Horn, “For this project, we trust the Mass Media students will develop several creative designs. We look forward to seeing the final presentations.” 

The new logo will be used throughout 2025 to recognize LIS’ 50-year milestone. This milestone marks tremendous growth for the company. Since its inception in 1975, LIS has continued to grow, both in staff and coverage area. What began as a family business that provided surveying services in Tennessee, has grown into a civil engineer and surveying corporation with 12 states of coverage. Over the past 10 years alone, LIS has doubled its personnel in order to keep up with demand. 

“We look forward to launching the new logo closer to our milestone as we celebrate with our clients, colleagues, and community,” commented Horn.  

For more information about LIS and to stay current on update and announcements, visit 

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