What is your major and why did you choose it?
I am currently a graduate student studying industrial management in the department of technology. I have always wanted to be an engineering project manager. Pursuing my master’s degree gives me the opportunity to do research, help undergrads with club projects, and to continue learning. Obtaining my masters, coupled with undergraduate degree, should open a lot of doors. These doors may even include the pursuit of a doctorate.
Who is your favorite professor and why?
I think it would be unfair to pick just one. The technology department is full of great professors that have a lot of real world experience. I work with 3 professors daily; Dr. Andrew Otieno, Dr. Cliff Mirman, and Dr. David Schroeder. I went to Africa with Dr. Otieno, Dr. Mirman gave me my assistantship, and I am working on getting a patent with Dr. Schroeder. I couldn’t ask for better professors.
What is your favorite thing to do on campus?
I have two equally favorite things to do on campus. The first being walking around the east lagoon. It is very close to where I live, I find myself going there to find peace. The other is to go the lacrosse field and shoot on goal. I started playing lacrosse in college and I have never put down my stick. Ripping shots on goal relieves a lot of stress.
How do the academics at NIU challenge you?
I have taken some pretty hard classes offered by the college of engineering. The most challenging of the classes were senior design 1 and 2. Two students and I invented a new actuation method for refreshable Braille displays. It was the most work I have ever done in my life. We designed it, built it, and did experimental testing on it. It was a great learning experience.
What academic resources at NIU have helped you as a student?
Career services at NIU are amazing. They are always so helpful and they listen.
What has helped you find your fit at NIU?
I would say living in the dorms my freshman and sophomore years. Some people say that you are defined by the friends you keep. I am no exception. I met so many people there that have influenced my life greatly.
Have you had any internship opportunities?
Yes, I have had two internships during my time at NIU. The first was at Pentair Water/ Aurora Pump in Aurora and the other was at Ideal Industries in Sycamore. Both of them were internships in manufacturing engineering. They were tremendous learning experiences. The value of my education definitely increased and they helped me grow as an engineer.
What has been your most rewarding experience at NIU?
The most rewarding experience was being elected the president of the men’s lacrosse team. I only started playing the sport the second semester of my freshman year. I instantly feel in love with the sport. Sophomore year I tore my ACL. I couldn’t run for 9 months. I had surgery and went through extensive rehabilitation. I came back to the sport as soon as possible and continued to be dedicated to my team. Overcoming that adversity only to become the clubs president is something I will always remember. Oh, I also graduated from NIU with a B.S, that was pretty rewarding too.
What are your plans after college?
Time will tell. I still have a few semesters to go. It is up in the air between industry and academia. There are some TPI (technology, policy, and innovation) doctoral programs that I could see myself trying to get into. I will also continue to be active in EWB. My recent trip to Kenya and Tanzania made me realize I want to help those in need.
Degree Program: M.S. Industrial Management; B.S. Manufacturing Engineering Technology (2009)
Graduation Date: 2011
High School: Oswego High School
Job: Graduate research assistant in the department of Technology
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