Tuesday, July 15, 2014

One student's summer adventures

My first Saturday here in Raleigh, North Carolina, I slept until 5 PM. No, I didn’t have mono; I was just severely jetlagged. Two days earlier, I had flown back to the United States from Guatemala. From the Philadelphia airport, I went straight to my hometown of Baltimore to pack for the rest of the summer. I proceeded to get two hours of sleep before waking up at 4 AM for my flight to Raleigh. Although those few days were crazy, my tendency to overextend myself has definitely paid off. This summer has been rewarding, exciting, and enlightening, and has helped to shape me as a person just like the past two semesters I spent at Penn.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Thinking about Pre-Orientation? Here's two students' reasons why you should come!

The best decision we made after committing to Penn was signing up for the AWE Pre-Orientation program. We know that sounds a little over the top, but it’s a completely legit statement. Coming into Penn Engineering, we didn’t know anybody and didn’t know what to expect, but the AWE Pre-Orientation program quickly alleviated all of our fears of not making friends or knowing what to do.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Why I chose Penn

Congrats to everyone who was accepted this year to Penn Engineering!  When I think back to last year, I remember the excitement of being in your shoes and making my decision on which school to attend.  Though I thought my choice would be difficult to make, when I visited Penn, I knew that this school was the right fit for me and my interests.  

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

One student's senior design experience

As of one hour ago, I finished giving my final presentation to the judges during Demo Day. For those of you who don’t know what that is, here’s a quick rundown: seniors at Penn have a final graduation requirement know as senior design. It varies a bit from department to department but basically it’s a final project to showcase what you learned in your four years here at Penn. In my department (ESE) we have a year to do any project we want. So we start by defining a project and finding advisors and then the rest of the year is actually spent completing it. Towards the end of the year we get the chance to show our work to people in what is called Demo Day. We set up our poster and product in a lab, and people have the chance to come in and talk to us or ask questions. We also have to present to a panel of judges. So, over the course of two hours we gave our presentation four or five times to a total of nine judges. 

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

What is Systems Engineering?

Systems engineering is a major that is often hard to describe.  There are many definitions of systems engineering—just ask a few systems majors and you will no doubt hear a different iteration—all of which include words like “optimization,” “efficiency,” “integration,” or some combination thereof.  Sure, these words can describe systems, but they are probably meaningless out of context.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Why Penn?

Something that I find to be kind of cool is that my answer to the question “Why Penn?” as a senior in college is pretty different from the one I would have given when I decided to apply early decision as a senior in high school.  When I applied to Penn, I wrote in my essay that Penn fit my top priorities: “academic excellence, school spirit, manageable size, and a beautiful campus.” I also discussed the residential house programs and the wide array of student activities. While all of these are true representations of what Penn offers, they are not what I would use to answer the question “Why Penn?” today.

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

My PennApps experience

I have a fair amount of hackathon experience under my belt:  I’ve done HackNY, Hack n’ Jill, and now, 4 Pennapps.  This spring semester, Pennapps took place (a little strangely) on Valentine’s Day.  As a graduating senior in Digital Media Design, it was also the last Pennapps I could participate in.  So, I was willing to forgo any Valentine’s Day plans, but only if I worked seriously on an idea I really liked.