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A photograph of Cornell Engienering student Makaya

Meet Makaya

A photograph of Cornell Engienering student MakayaMajor: chemical engineering
Hometown: Lusaka, Zambia

Why did you choose Cornell and/or Cornell Engineering?
I chose Cornell because I knew that it would provide me with an experience that would allow me to develop not only as an engineer but also as a person. I knew Cornell would the place where I would explore my interests in depth and interact with inspiring, dedicated and ambitious people.

What is your favorite thing about Cornell Engineering?
My favorite thing about Cornell Engineering is the opportunity to take classes outside my major. As someone who is also interested in the social sciences, I value this because I get the best of both worlds!

How do you get involved outside the classroom?
I work with Engineering Learning Initiatives as an Academic Excellence Workshop (AEW) Facilitator, teaching Math 1910 and 1920. I am also involved in research about wine and grape chemistry and I am part of the Zambia Community Education Initiative (ZCEI) club that seeks to improve education in Zambia.

How was your experience adjusting to Cornell?
As an international student, it was difficult in the beginning but as I immersed myself in the community by joining clubs and being more involved, my sense of belonging was fostered. My transition was made easier by the various resources that were available and the amazing people who were always willing to help.

a photograph of current studnet Veronica holding a rubber ducky

Meet Veronica

I am a Cornell Engineer poster with current studnet Veronica on it.Major: chemical engineering
Hometown: Rochester, NY

Veronica is an engineering ambassador, an engineering peer advisor, an Academic Excellence Workshop facilitator, and a member of Greek Life. She has launched her own crocheted apparel cottage business out of her home and loves to write short screenplays—she is minoring in film here at Cornell.

Veronica breaks the rules by exploring her passions not only within the realm of engineering, but also in other areas such as film and writing. Exercising her strengths in these areas gives her a creative edge that enables her to do better, more innovative work within chemical engineering.

Veronica wants prospective students to know “how collaborative Cornell Engineering is. So many of her projects at Cornell have been team-based and each groupmate brings their own unique perspective to the table has really elevated the quality of these assignments. Leanring and forming meaningful friendships goes hand in hand in engineering.”

She feels the most incredible thing about being an engineer is “the breadth of the field. Engineers have reach that impacts every corner of industry. They are at the forefront of movements towards societal progress; engineers are pioneering the shift towards clean energy, designing biotechnology that will forever change how the world sees disease, and coding the digital interface of future generations.

A photo of Cornell Engineering student Deniz

Meet Deniz

A photo of Cornell Engineering student DenizMajor: chemical engineering

Hometown: Istanbul, Turkey

Why did you choose Cornell Engineering?
I chose Cornell Engineering for the nearly limitless options it offered me. From starting to do research from my very first year to leading project teams and becoming a teaching assistant, CoE allows each of us to learn as much as we can in the time we are here.

What is your favorite thing about Cornell Engineering?
I love the fact that although we are undergraduates, the doors are open for us to try out new experiences and fields.

What do you do outside of the classroom? Reaching out is the key here!
There are so many opportunities I would have missed if I just didn’t take a shot at them. Through professors, your teaching assistants, peer advisors, and all those people that CoE put you in contact with signed up for their position to help you; use that.

How was your experience adjusting to Cornell?
I have to be honest as an international student I didn’t have much of a chance to come to campus to see if Cornell was good for me. So, I had to deal with that question in my first semester here. As time passed and I adjusted to the time difference and had a routine I realized I was adjusting. Also, if I could give one piece of advice to upcoming freshman, it would be: don’t put pressure on yourself to find the perfect friend group on your first week here. Friendships take time to build and new friends also tend to pop up out of nowhere.

A photo of Cornell Engineering student Emily

Meet Emily

A photo of Cornell Engineering student EmilyMajor: chemical engineering
Hometown: Somers, NY

Why did you choose Cornell Engineering?
I chose Cornell Engineering for the people and for all of the amazing opportunities it gives. Cornell Engineering has so many great things like project teams and amazing faculty that help students grow in and outside of the classroom and gives all-encompassing view of engineering. The college also fosters a unique support system with the way it’s run that really builds students up and helps them thrive in challenging environments.

What is your favorite thing about Cornell Engineering?
My favorite thing about Cornell Engineering is the constant support you receive from so many different places. It really helps you get the most out of your classes and helps you connect with other students even more.

What do you do outside of the classroom?
I am involved with Cornell University Sustainable Design, a sustainability focused project team on campus and I am the president of Alpha Omega Epsilon, Cornell’s only professional engineering sorority. I also work as a tutor on campus and participate as an Engineering Ambassador.

Cornell Engineering student Melissa

Meet Melissa

Cornell Engineering student MelissaMajor: chemical engineering
Hometown: Rochester, NY

Why you choose Cornell Engineering?
I liked the big, open campus with its beautiful waterfalls and spaces where people seemed to enjoy hanging out outside. Also, everyone I met before I applied (I met with some professors and the students who gave tours) was so kind and welcoming.

What is your favorite thing about Cornell Engineering?
My favorite thing about Cornell Engineering is the collaborative environment. There were definitely academic struggles for me throughout my four semesters so far, but the people around me made the difficulty and rigor more manageable. I made a study group first semester with people I was randomly assigned to work with on the first day of math discussion, and to be quite honest I was a bit intimidated by them because they clearly knew more than me. However, I quickly learned that Cornell Engineering is a great place to meet people who are better than you at something, but who are so kind and willing to help you improve. My freshman year study buddies are still among my closest friends, despite the fact that we all chose different majors and don’t share as many classes anymore.

What do you do outside of the classroom?
Since freshman year, I have been going to a nursing home a short walk from the freshman dorms on North Campus to play music on my guitar nearly every Friday night. Although it just a small part of my week, I have really enjoyed seeing the same people every week, playing and singing along with them, and talking about anything that came to mind.

Cornell engineering student Amanda

Meet Amanda R

Cornell engineering student AmandaMajor: chemical engineering
Hometown: Boca Raton, FL

Why you choose Cornell Engineering?
I loved the Cornell community and campus. The engineering program is such a collaborative environment and I felt it would be a place I could really thrive.

What is your favorite thing about Cornell Engineering?
My favorite thing about Cornell Engineering is how dedicated and supportive the professors and teaching assistants are. They create an environment for collaboration and support students in all endeavors.

What do you do outside of the classroom?
Outside the classroom, I am involved in several organizations including Engineering Ambassadors, Academic Policy Student Assembly Committee, and AICHE. I got involved by attending club fairs and looking at flyers posted all around campus.

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