Why did you decide to study engineering?
I wanted to study engineering because I enjoyed the content of my high school STEM classes, and I knew an engineering degree would unlock a broader set of skills that I could apply to any problem. I am intrigued by math and computer science as languages to model and simplify problems that often involve large quantities of data, and the systems program at WashU is the perfect place to foster that interest.
Why did you pick WashU?
I chose WashU because it felt like a place that could be a second home despite being a thousand miles away from my actual home. I knew that the engineering classes here are structured in a way that is conducive to student success and that Engineering Student Services has strong support systems. I appreciated the flexibility the university allows in choosing an academic concentration. In permitting students to switch majors and schools and to take classes outside of their home schools, they allow room to be indecisive. That is important to me because I couldn't be fully confident that the program I applied to at age 17 was one I would be happy with years later, even though it has been!
Who is your favorite instructor and why?
My favorite instructor has been Jim Feher. He gives excellent explanations of topics that are otherwise complicated and difficult to understand, and connects with every student even while teaching a large lab class. "Introduction to Engineering Design" has been my favorite class ever since I took it my first year and working with Prof. Feher as an assistant in instruction has been one of my favorite experiences at WashU.
What advice would you give to a new student?
Don't put too much pressure on yourself to precisely plan out your path. Your academic or career journey does not have to be linear and you'll develop new interests as you take more classes. Look for ways to combine your interests, even if they seem unrelated. Interdisciplinary work is huge at WashU and can be very interesting.
Also, try to make friends within your major! Intra-department community has been a very valuable part of my academic experience.
What is your favorite thing about St. Louis?
The community. There is a very full calendar of local events every weekend that are very affordable, if not free. The green spaces are very nice and architecture of the local neighborhoods is beautiful. St. Louisans have a lot of pride in where they're from, which is nice to see!
What campus activities or groups would you recommend to a new student?
I would recommend EnCouncil, Society of Women Engineers and WUSA (Washington University Student Associates). I also love the rec center community and enjoy intramural volleyball!
What are your plans for the future?
I don't have concrete plans, but I hope to further my education through a master's or PhD program. It would be cool to continue studying environmental systems, but I'll have to see where the opportunities take me!