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Investing in the Future

From its earliest days during the Great Depression, van Zelm Engineers has believed in the importance of philanthropy, maintaining a steady commitment to stewardship within the communities we serve.

We believe strongly that our Firm’s responsibility as a corporate citizen is to maintain an active involvement in civic and charitable organizations, through personal and corporate contributions.

Support for Future Engineers

van Zelm is committed to fostering student interest in STEM disciplines. Our management and staff are involved as mentors.  They serve on university academic program advisory boards, and teach as adjunct faculty.  They are active nationally in university construction management accreditation.

ACE Mentor Program

A member of the ACE Mentor Program of Connecticut since its inception, van Zelm has provided generations of mentors for ACE student teams, as well as Chapter and State Board Leadership. Our firm also makes significant annual financial contributions to ACE – CT.

van Zelm’s Joel Baker ACE Outstanding Mentor Honoree for the New Britain Chapter – 2017 Joel Baker (center) with Steve Krawczynski (left) and Tom Menditto (right)


In 1990, the van Zelm Heywood & Shadford, Inc. Endowed Scholarship was created to provide scholarships for students in the University of Hartford College of Engineering, Technology and Architecture.

In addition, van Zelm supports the award of annual scholarships through Professional Women in Construction, the New Britain Boys & Girls Club, and other AEC industry associations.

Paying it Forward

In addition to ongoing support of a number of philanthropic organizations, van Zelm is regularly involved in activies to help those in need in our community.  Some past and current charitable giving programs include:

  • Toys for Tots
  • Mathcounts
  • Salvation Army Food Pantry
  • CT Children’s Medical Center Toy Drive
  • American Heart Association
  • YWCA Hartford Region
  • American Lung Association
  • American Cancer Society
  • Junior Achievement
  • We Are The Children
Holiday Charities

The Gingerbread House Contest was a great success in bringing teams together to design and implement their gingerbread house creations. The majority of the gingerbread house submissions were donated right before Christmas to the “We Are The Children” foundation/program.

“We Are The Children” is an organization founded in 1985 by Gary Craig, morning radio personality based out of Hartford, CT, and works alongside a committee of individuals and organizations to help raise funds and provide services to local children in need. For more information on the organization visit here.

Our donated houses were displayed for children’s enjoyment since 2016 “We Are The Children” annual Christmas day party. Representatives from the organization were more than happy to receive any/all donations for the kids.