What does it mean to you to be an engineer?
To me, being an engineer means being a problem solver — taking a problem, breaking it down, and building solutions that can really help people.
How is your field being redefined for today and tomorrow’s needs? What contributions do you hope to make to this redefined landscape?
There’s a stereotype that computer scientists are math geeks who sit at a desk all day coding. That’s a total misconception. We are certainly not confined to our desks and are fully engaged in the world. Take a problem like the need to get medical supplies to a remote area in a developing country. It’s a computer scientist who’s going to create the software that programs the drone capable of that.
I’ve accepted a job offer from Microsoft, and I hope to one day go into education policy and help more people access STEM learning. We should all be using our talents to make society better.
How did NYU Tandon help you redefine yourself?
I had many great experiences here that helped shape my goals. For example, I served as the VP of the undergraduate student council, and that gave me a broader perspective on student needs and challenges, which is directly related to the work in the education realm I want to do.
I also launched an initiative called build4good, which aims to connect students with technology skills to nonprofits that need their help. It’s been a great success thus far, so every day I get to see the difference engineers and technologists can make in the world.