Meet Cecile Laginestra, and Learn About Her Passion in the Fashion Industry!

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Name: Cecile Laginestra

Class Year: 2018

Major: Communications and Art History

Favorite Class: A History of Fashion & Décor

Favorite thing about BC: The people. Everyone is so hardworking, focused, and passionate.

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

It has always been my dream to work in the fashion industry. I love graphic design, writing, and art and I can really see myself working with a designer or design house as an artistic director, or in fashion public relations.

What are you doing to get there?

I have been working over the past couple years to get experience in the industry through internships, job shadows, and volunteering. My first year at BC, I interned for a small fashion marketplace headquartered in Boston. I have also shadowed buyers at Bloomingdales, and worked at fashion week for the past two seasons. I really tried to gain as much experience, and as many opportunities as possible in order to see the industry from different perspectives.

How did you learn about fashion and communications?

I always knew I wanted to work in a creative field. I love working with and being around people, which is what led me to declare a Communications major. I spent time comparing the skills I had learned, with the job descriptions and qualifications necessary for various positions within the industry. I wanted to work in a position where everyday would be a new, different, challenge.

What factors have contributed to your interest in fashion and communications?

In high school I took my first marketing class and I really fell in love with the conceptual and artistic aspects of advertising. I knew I wanted to learn more about design in general, and I needed to pair that with knowledge of general business practices. During my time at BC I have learned how to effectively take a project from start to finish.

How did you get started exploring potential careers?

I spent some time making a list of all the things I love to do, and then I did some research about all the possibilities that existed within fashion. I tried to cross reference different positions and I looked closely at the day-to-day tasks that each job required.

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in fashion and communications?

The most important piece of advice I would give anyone who wants to go into fashion or communications is to take any opportunity to learn that you are given, and use the experience to the fullest. Always be adaptable and willing to commit 100% of your effort to any task you are given, no matter how small it may seem.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

I consider applying, being accepted, and transferring to Boston College my freshman year to be my greatest achievement. It was a difficult decision to make, but it was one of the best choices I have ever made.

Who are your heroes in real life?

Definitely my parents, because they show me what commitment, determination, and success look like everyday. They have taught me the importance of setting goals, working hard, and realizing that nothing comes for free.

An Intro and a Farewell to the PCA’s Fearless Leader, Ali Joyce

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^ Ali with her dog, Brodie.

Name: Ali Joyce

Major in College: Communications

Favorite aspect of Boston College/What will you miss the most? 

ALI: Definitely the people and the relationships that I have developed here. The people at BC and in the Career Center are so fantastic that it truly is incredible.

What drew you to the advising role? 

ALI: I initially was drawn to marketing internships, but I wanted to do something where I felt that I made a difference, and I began talking with my academic adviser, in the last quarter of senior year (it is NEVER too late), and the adviser pointed me towards career advising.

What advice do you have for students at BC with regards to Career Development?

ALI: Find that person on campus that you connect with, whether that be a professor and faculty member, an alumnus/a, or an administrator.

What do you consider your greatest achievement? 

ALI: Does my wardrobe count? No but really, being from a small town where nobody leaves, being brave to branch out and settle in a much larger city was extremely challenging.

What is your favorite color? 

ALI: Absolutely all of them. Go through that crayon box and I will find a way to love that color. Now that I think about it, does ‘macaroni and cheese’ count as a color? I think there is one in the Crayola box? Oh wait… ‘tiffany blue’ is definitely up there too because I expect all of my presents to come in a box like that! *giggles*. 

TYLER: Your childhood must have been incredible.

You have a free afternoon in Boston, what are you doing?

ALI: Going to Harpoon, right by the seaport, with my husband. Duh. And a concert, if there is one.

What is your strangest talent?

ALI: Oh my gosh, I can touch my tongue to my nose (it’s about as exciting as you think).

TYLER: Wow. Incredible. Truly awe inspiring.

What are you a “closet” fan of?

ALI: I’ve watched a couple TV marathons of the Housewives of Beverly Hills. But I was on a red-eye flight so that excuses it right? I have my life more together than most of them so that makes me feel better about myself.

TYLER: *nods* mhm.

Favorite Cereal?

ALI: Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Obviously.

TYLER: Yes, obviously.

If you weren’t working in Career Advising, what would you be doing?

ALI: 1. Fashion, working at Klinefelds (I watch ‘Say Yes To The Dress’ so I am very knowledgeable) 2. Ohio St. Football TV Timeout Coordinator. Being in control is good, I can make all the fans wait till I am ready. 

Have you ever re-gifted anything?

ALI: YES! An amazon gift card… and then the person re-gifted it back to me. Who even does that? Plus she did it right after the wedding. I don’t know what to do about it? Do I keep it going? The people should let me know? 

Meet Amber Meyers, Assistant Director on the Career Exploration Team

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Name: Amber Meyers

Role at the Career Center: Assistant Director, Career Exploration

Do you teach any classes?:
Not at BC currently, but I have taught career and academic planning courses in the past.

Where are you from?:

Buffalo, NY.

How long have you been at BC?

Since August, so about 9 months.

How did you get started exploring potential careers?

I knew that I wanted to major in psychology, but I spent most of undergrad exploring the ways I could apply my major after graduation. To learn more about the intersection of psych and business, I interviewed alums about the work they were doing in HR and industrial organizational psychology. I worked on research with faculty and interned within HR. During my internships I found I wasn’t working with people as much as I had hoped to. So I reflected on what kind of environment I wanted to be in, and the answer for me was a college campus. Part of the reason for that is because everyone is working on goals and growth, creating a positive and energizing environment. I had also talked to faculty and staff on campus, and they recommended the Higher Ed grad program at Canisius.

What factors have contributed to your interest in higher ed career services?

Stemming from my HR internships, Career Services was a natural progression within Higher Ed. I worked in Career Centers throughout grad school, and then my first position after grad school was at Purdue University in the Exploratory Studies program, which had about 900 students. It was more academic in nature, and I worked with students who were trying to pick a major out of the 200 that were available.

What are some of your favorite aspects of your job?

Meeting with students, and the educational piece: being able to educate students on career readiness skills and resources. I also love hearing their stories and learning about their interests, experiences, and skills and how they might want to use them in the future.

What are your biggest challenges?

Higher Ed, like many industries, is always changing and growing. One initiative schools are moving towards is finding ways to service all student’s needs. For example, in what capacity do we help grad students, and in what capacity do we have services for student veterans, etc. Fortunately, we have a lot of programs at BC that help with career development, like the Winter Job Shadow program and Endeavor, but I’ve also worked for schools that don’t have those resources and could really benefit from them.

What are you involved with at BC?

I am currently a volunteer for the Read Aloud program, which means I go to an elementary school to read to the 3rd grade students about once a month. The last book they wanted me to read was The Book Without Pictures by BJ Novak. It’s kind of funny how different it is from working with college students. Apparently my monkey robot voice isn’t all that great.

 

What advice would you give to students about finding:

  • The right workplace fit?
    • It’s a never ending cycle of reflecting and exploring. You aren’t typically planning from now to retirement, but more so for your next step after graduation. Within that next step, much like you are now, you’ll be reflecting on what you want more or less of until you find the right fit. You don’t always know until you’ve tried something; be that a role, organization, company, etc. I panic less now since I graduated grad school because I’ve learned to deal with the constant transitions in life and have realized that everything will eventually work out.
  • Ways both to prepare and to enter this field?
    • Since students are so busy, it’s helpful to start reflecting and exploring career options earlier so that you can be more intentional with how to spend your time. Conduct online research, volunteer, shadow, and talk with professionals and alums to explore areas you may want to seek experience in so that you know better what you are looking for in an internship or entry-level job.

 

What is your niche thing that students can come to talk to you about:

I mostly meet with first and second-year students, but I see a lot of juniors and seniors regarding exploring career options, especially since the cycle of exploration is continual. I would say come talk to me about how to explore those options and gain new experiences, and to reflect on the experiences you’ve already had. The goal would be, as a staff member, to help you to get the most out of your student experience here.

What activities do you enjoy outside of your job at BC?

Travel. I’m going to Germany, Austria, and Italy this summer. I’m really hoping they’re like the Instagram photos.

What’s your favorite meme right now?

AmbersFavoriteMeme

 

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Growing into adulthood and being able to take care of myself entirely, being independent and taking risks, moving to new cities and places, and doing things I have always wanted to do, like travel. Once you get through school, you can actually go through your bucket list and create new goals!

Who are your heroes in real life?

Mentors that I’ve had in Higher Education.  I’ve found some really great mentors in the field through my travels and working in different schools, and it’s nice to have someone you can have your own professional development conversations with.

Meet Peter Hunt, Assistant Director for Career Engagement (Lynch Liaison)!

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Name: Peter Hunt

Major when you were in college: History

Role in the Career Center: Assistant Director for Career Engagement (Lynch Liaison)

What do you do in the Career Center?

I empower students and young alumni to find their home in the world of work, to find that next role where they can nurture their best skills and contribute to making the world a better place. As a member of the Engagement Team, I am dedicated to advising Lynch School undergrads and graduate students on everything from career choice to cover letters.

How did you get there?

When I graduated from college, I worked my first job at the Rhode Island state prison, which was interesting but depressing. Then I worked in group homes for people with developmental disabilities. My first job in the career services field was at Brown University as a Career Resource Manager. I later moved to BC to start working in a very similar role in which I was responsible for writing everything on the Career Center’s website and working as a technology manager for the office. When I got my Masters of Education in Higher Education Administration in 2007, I started working as a career counselor, which is my current position in the BC Career Center. I’ve been working as a career counselor for 10 years now.

What kinds of questions can students ask you?

On a practical level, students can ask me how to stand out as a candidate in Education, how to define and accurately describe their strengths to employers in writing and in interviews, how to figure out alternative jobs or careers when their defined path is not making them happy, and how to identify great sources of jobs and internships.

What is the biggest piece of advice you would give to students looking to find an internship or job they truly enjoy?

The best piece of advice I can give is to push yourself to network with BC alumni and other people who work in your field(s) of interest; there are so many people out there who want to help you!

What activities do you enjoy outside of your job at BC?

I love to do anything outdoors, including cross-country skiing, biking, hiking with my family, and kayaking. I love music and I play some guitar. I also love to cook when I have the time. I almost went to cooking school!

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Being a loving and attentive father to a child on the autism spectrum.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My wife is my hero for the love she shows to me and my son, but also because she is an amazingly articulate and talented writer who doesn’t have time to write.

WHAT ARE YOUR PLANS FOR THIS SUMMER?

By Amber Meyers, Assistant Director, Boston College Career Center

“What are your plans this summer?” is a common question asked of students once the snow (finally) stops falling here in Boston and the spring semester begins to wind down.

By now you may have considered interning at your dream company, taking classes, or studying abroad. Or maybe you’re feeling confused because you’re not quite sure how to best use your summer months?

Fear not! The good news is you’re in control of how you spend your time this summer and you can still plan to make the most of it. There are many steps you can take to have a successful summer! Tackling even just one or two will help you explore the possibilities and develop skills.

Conduct Informational Interviews – Make connections while exploring your career options! Reach out to family, friends, or BC alumni who work at an organization of interest to you or in a field you’re curious about and set up a time to talk with them about their career, their company, and industry. This is a great way to network and learn about what it takes to be successful in an industry from a professional in the field. You may even find a mentor in the field or learn about future internship opportunities. LinkedIn is a great resource for expanding your network and connecting with BC alums to interview.

Get Experience – While many students put pressure on themselves to get an internship as early as freshman or sophomore year, most companies target juniors for their internship programs. While you may not land an internship, there are so many opportunities to develop transferable skills through traditional summer jobs. For example, being a server in a restaurant may help you develop strong customer service or communication skills, and working as a camp counselor may help you develop teamwork or problem solving skills. It is important to value your experiences and be ready to tell potential employers how you can add value to their company based on your experience from previous employment.

Be strategic about the opportunities you seek. Many students want to work for large companies or organizations after graduation, but they don’t always think of ways to get insights into the company. For example, if a student is interested in a career with L Brands, it could be very beneficial for them to get some in-store experience at Bath & Body Works. This would be a great way to show that you understand the company culture and the customers in an interview.

Develop a Skill – Perhaps you’ve been meaning to learn some new Excel formulas, get familiar with a social media platform, or brush up on a foreign language. Summer is a great time to focus on the things you have been putting off. Wondering what skills are sought within your industries of interest? Take some time over the summer to look at job descriptions for the types of positions you might want to apply for someday so you know how best to prepare.

Volunteer – Use your personal and BC network while researching online to identify organizations you may want to volunteer with. Many skills can be developed through volunteering. Additionally, you will get a chance to explore an organization and cause while making connections. Approach volunteer opportunities as if you’re applying for your dream job. Write a personalized cover letter and send it along with your resume to local organizations and offer your help. Even if you don’t land a gig in the marketing department, you never know how much you may gain (both personally and professionally) from the experience of giving back.

Do Something That Makes You Interesting – In the words of Kid President, “make the world more awesome!” What do you like to do for fun? What would you enjoy talking to people about in a casual setting? Training for a half-marathon, learning a new instrument, perfecting your cooking skills, or taking a cross country trip? The opportunities are endless, but you are the only person who can decide what makes you interesting.

Best of luck making your summer a meaningful and memorable one. Hopefully when you head back to school in the fall and someone asks, “What did you do this summer?” you will have plenty to talk about!

Adapted from http://www.naceweb.org/mynace/grab-and-go/what-are-your-plans-for-summer/

Meet Graduate Assistant, Katie Jouthas!

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Name: Katie Jouthas

Class Year: First-Year Masters student

Major: Higher Education Administration, focus in Spirituality, Faith, and Formation

Favorite Class: Catholic Higher Education

Favorite thing about BC: The environment

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

I hope to work in career coaching or academic advising to foster relationships with students and develop strategies to bridge academic affairs and student affairs.

What are you doing to get there?

My master’s degree and experience working at the Career Center are helping me develop relationships, skills, and knowledge to best prepare me for working in this field.

How did you learn about student affairs?

I learned about working in student affairs through my leadership at my undergraduate institution. I was more in love with my organizations and the work we were doing than my classes, and one day my supervisor revealed to me that I could do this for a living. That was the real “Aha!” moment when I realized I could continue to work with college students for a career.

What factors have contributed to your interest in student affairs?

I am attracted to working in student affairs because of the relationships and sense of community that comes with working on a college campus. It also is a field of continuous learning and you never know what the next day will bring. It is exciting to stay on my toes!

How did you get started exploring potential careers?

I started exploring potential careers through conversations with people I looked up to, by reading position descriptions of jobs that peaked my interest, and by getting involved on campus in multiple functional areas. Even today, I am still gaining exposure to new positions and learning about opportunities that could be in my future.

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in student affairs?

I would encourage you to connect with people in the field, ask every question you have, and try to take opportunities to gain exposure to the daily operations of the field. Sometimes we can get so excited about the positive moments, but it is important to identify the challenges that will push you to work harder and which ones are deal breakers.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

My greatest achievement is moving from the west coast to the east coast at the young age of 21, and negotiating everything that comes with that move.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My heroes are my parents, aka my best friends. I look up to them for their hard work, love, and dedication supporting my brother and me. They inspire me to do my best every day and to make a difference in each community in which I am involved.

Meet Graduate Assistant, Megan Dailey!

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Name: Megan Dailey

Class Year: Second year graduate student in the Higher Education Masters program

Major: Higher Education Administration, Concentration in Student Affairs

Favorite Class: Gender Issues in Higher Education

Favorite thing about BC: My favorite thing about BC has been the opportunity to work one-on-one with students and help them identify their unique skills and interests.

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

Working at a higher education institution in a position where I can inspire and support students in their personal, academic, and professional pursuits.

What are you doing to get there?

I will be finishing my Masters in Higher Education in May of 2017. This degree, paired with my graduate assistantship and summer internship, has helped me develop the skills to be successful in the field of student affairs. In looking for jobs I have focused on researching different institutions’ mission, values, and current programs to see if they align with my values, interests, and skills.

How did you get started exploring potential careers?

In undergrad I majored in psychology and did research for a professor in the psychology department. My classes and on-campus work helped me decide that I wanted to continue working in a field in which I could work with people and use my analytical and problem solving skills. In order to learn more about different opportunities, I attended my undergraduate university’s Career Fair, where I met recruiters from Cincinnati Children’s Hospital. Through this connection, I landed a job at Children’s as a Clinical Research Coordinator (CRC).

Within my CRC role, I coordinated a self-management study with adolescents and young adults who had sickle cell disease. While working on the study I realized that I really liked working with this age population in a setting where I could help people set and achieve their goals. Within my lab I worked as our Student Intern Coordinator. In this role, I recruited, interviewed, hired, trained, and supervised students who were interested in gaining experience within our lab. These two experiences led me to seek out a career field where I could work with students in a full-time setting.

From there, I started doing research about positions at colleges and universities and realized that I would need to get my Masters degree in Higher Education or College Student Personnel. I then networked with different people in the field and researched graduate programs to find a best fit.

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in higher education?

Start connecting with professionals in the field and meet with them to learn more about their career path and what they do within their role. Informational interviews can help you explore different roles and industries and help you narrow down your career interests.

What do you like to do in your free time?

I’m addicted to Netflix, I enjoy spending time with family and friends, and I love cooking and trying new restaurants. 🙂

Meet Graduate Assistant, Maggie Dwyer!

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Name: Maggie Dwyer    

Class Year: First year graduate student, Class of 2018

Major: Higher Education Administration

Favorite Class: Catholic Higher Education

Favorite thing about BC: Jesuit!

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

I’m not exactly sure what area of higher education I will be in right after graduation. Wherever I end up, I hope that I will be making a positive impact on the profession as a whole or on the student experience directly.

What are you doing to get there?

Getting my master’s degree and trying to gain a variety of different experiences so that I can have exposure to the different paths I can take once I graduate.

How did you learn about higher education?

I was studying abroad in Copenhagen, Denmark my junior year of college when my positive psychology professor asked me to think about who the happiest people I knew were when they were working. I quickly realized that everyone I knew who absolutely loved their job worked in student affairs. After reflecting on the environments that I was most happy in, I realized that my own involvement in student affairs was my favorite part about my college experience. So, here I am studying to stay in college forever!

What factors have contributed to your interest in higher education?

My junior year of college I was deciding whether or not to pursue a graduate degree in higher education, positive psychology, or industrial/organizational psychology. When I chose higher education, I was hoping that I would be able to incorporate what I loved about positive psychology and industrial/organizational psychology into my work and future career. After working as a Graduate Assistant in the Boston College Career Center since August, I am constantly finding new ways that all of my interests fit into this field. For this reason, I am confident that a future career in higher education is the right fit for me.

How did you get started exploring potential careers?

I began to really start exploring potential careers my sophomore year when I went on a vocational discernment themed retreat (similar to Halftime and Endeavor at BC). Since I attended a Jesuit university for my undergrad, we also used Michael Himes’ approach to discernment by considering the questions that you often hear at BC- What brings me Joy? What am I good at? What does the world need me to be? While reflecting on these questions, I started to connect my skills, interests, and things I was passionate about with potential career paths.

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in higher education?

My advice to students interested in student affairs and higher education would be to keep an open mind about the various functional areas within the field. There are so many different paths you could take, and you may surprise yourself and find that you’re really happy working in a different area than you might have been involved with in undergrad.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Being able to incorporate my different passions into what I do now and plan to do in the future.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My parents! I’m fortunate enough to have two loving parents that have become my best friends. They have always encouraged me to exceed even my own expectations and never to give up on something I’m genuinely passionate about.

Meet GA Kate Tessmann!

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Photo: Women’s March on Washington, January 2017

Name: Kate Tessmann

Class Year: Master of Social Work Candidate, First Year

Major: Clinical Social Work – Children, Youth and Families

Favorite Class So Far: Diversity and Cross Cultural Issues

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

Upon graduating, I hope to work full time in either a middle school or high school as an Adjustment Counselor (the official Massachusetts name for a School Social Worker). I have worked in schools previously, and I really enjoy the community and teamwork associated with being a school staff person. Working with youth and young adults has always been a passion of mine, and I hope to find a position after graduation that allows me to continue serving that population.

What are you doing to get there?

There are several requirements to becoming an Adjustment Counselor in Massachusetts. First, you have to do a placement in a school for one year while receiving your MSW. I am currently in the placement process for next year to be matched with a school. Beyond the placement, you must take clinical coursework related to working with children, youth and their families, and pass the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) exam when you graduate. To begin preparing for the exam, I downloaded an app on my phone that sends me one question a day to get used to the format of the test. Most MSW students do not focus on the exam until closer to graduation, since you cannot take it until you have your diploma. Other than those required steps, I try to network with any social workers I come across and inquire about their paths. Social work has so many possible paths, depending on what setting you choose to work in and what populations you decide to serve, and I always enjoy learning more about the opportunities available in my future.

How did you learn about Social Work, and what contributed to your interest in the field?

During my undergraduate years I earned two degrees, one in History and one in Social Studies Education, after having a crisis about my Theater major and whether or not I was really fulfilling my passions and purpose in life. During my student teaching experience senior year, it became very apparent that teaching was not my best fit and I panicked. I am very much a planner, and I had no idea where to go next. As graduation drew near, I decided to commit to doing a year of service with City Year, so I could have some breathing room to figure out my next move. It turns out that serving young people and their communities was where my heart fit best, and I ended up committing to 3 years of AmeriCorps service within Boston Public Schools. It was during these three years of living on less than minimum wage and working 50+ hours a week that I truly reflected on my priorities, who I am as an individual, and how I want to improve the world around me. After having many discussions with my mentors, supervisors and social workers at the schools I served, it became clear that a career in social work best matched my values and priorities. My journey to a “career” was much longer than I anticipated as a graduating senior, but it was the path I needed to take to find myself and figure out what actually matters to me in the long run.

 

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in Social Work?

If you are seriously interested in working with individuals and communities to improve their lives, I would suggest completing a year of service within those communities prior to attending graduate school. Social work takes hard work and unwavering commitment – and you need to make sure your priorities and values match those of the field. I would also check out the Social Work Code of Ethics, which pretty clearly outlines the values required of all social workers: https://www.socialworkers.org/pubs/code/code.asp. Also, social work is an extremely broad field: you can do macro level work with policy and advocacy, or you can do clinical work (therapy) with individuals, families, couples, etc. in a variety of settings. Speak to current social workers and really explore the different populations you can serve, and the different environments you can make an impact in.

What are you most proud of?

Taking a leap of faith and committing to three years of national service after graduation. It was really difficult for me to put my values, idealism, and personal growth above financial security, comfort, and my need to have a plan. I second guessed my decision to serve almost on a daily basis, especially when money was tight (and I had to take on another job or two) or I felt exhausted from the long days with little recognition. However, I persevered and was courageous enough to go “all in” on myself and my belief in social justice, and it has repaid me in more ways than I imagined.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My heroes in real life are my former students and current clients, who are overcoming seemingly impossible obstacles and breaking down stereotypes daily, paving their own paths to success.

My heroes in real life are also those who served by my side; who continuously inspire me and challenge me to learn, grow, improve, and keep fighting for social justice and the rights of every individual.

 

Meet Brogrammer, John M. Flaherty!

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Name: John M. Flaherty

Class Year: 2017

Major: Computer Science with a minor in Philosophy

Favorite Class: Mobile Application Development

Favorite thing about BC: The retreat community (48 Hours, Halftime)

What can you see yourself doing after graduation?

Software Engineering.

What are you doing to get there?

Practicing programming and doing interviews. I just accepted a job offer to work for Wayfair as a Software Engineer in Boston after I graduate.

How did you learn about software engineering/the tech industry?

I learned about it by playing Runescape and wanting to know how the game was made. The maker is named JaGeX (Java Gaming Experts). The rest is history.

What factors have contributed to your interest in software engineering/the tech industry?

Classes, especially Mobile App Development, Web App Development, Algorithms, Object-Oriented Design, and Robotics were all very cool, programming-heavy classes. Also, internships I’ve done, combined with a general feeling that software engineering is moving the rest of the world forward in different ways, have contributed to my interest. It’s also a lucrative industry.

What advice would you give to students who are also interested in software engineering/the tech industry?

Get involved with the computer science society immediately, because you will be lost if you don’t find the small community of people who are connected to the outside computer science world. The major and computer science community are so small that you need to find resources and people elsewhere that can introduce you to the industry. You also need to build your own brand in order to get noticed.

What do you consider your greatest achievement?

I have working production code in the Kayak Android app that you can touch, use, play with, and admire.

Who are your heroes in real life?

My living heroes are Edward Snowden, Thich Nhat Hanh (a zen buddhist teacher, considered to be very close to a modern-day Buddha), and Julian Assange. My dead heroes are Alan Watts, Jesus Christ, and George Carlin.