Wednesday, October 29, 2014

When In Rome - Study Abroad - Guest Blogger Ari Divizio

Posted on October 29, 2014


How did you find the study abroad program?
Being 100% Italian, I had always wanted to go to Italy, and I figured study abroad was the best chance to do it. I knew I didn’t want to miss out on a full semester at Purdue, so I wanted to see my other options. When talking to my advisor, he mentioned a spring break option in Rome. Specifically, Engineering and Public Health in the Service Sector: A Rome Study Abroad Experience. I only knew a few words and phrases of Italian, but I didn’t need to know the language at all in order for me to go. I was concerned that I wouldn’t get a full study abroad experience with a trip of only 10 days, but my advisor convinced me otherwise, and he was right.
During the trip:
While in Italy, I learned about the necessity of engineers collaborating with other disciplines. As an Industrial Engineering student, we went to Rome with Nursing students which did not make sense at first. After going through the program, I now know the importance of keeping in mind public health when solving any problem in engineering, while the nursing students learned that the technical side of engineering is also important in their field. Studying abroad made me see various other perspectives that I would not see without going. We had to complete a project and presentation with a group of students who attend the University of Sapienza in Rome. The language barrier was an obstacle we had to face, but along the way the American students and Italian students learned so much about each other. Thinking globally, each place has different social norms, ways of teaching, and schooling background. While learning more and more about each other, we worked better as a team. It ended up being the perfect program from a technical, teamwork, global, and travel perspective.
If you are interested in studying abroad, follow this link!!

Here are some pictures from my trip!

Making a wish at the Trevi Fountain

Inside St. Peter's Basillica

Me outside St. Peter's in the Vatican. Did you know it is the largest church in the world?

Purdue students strike a pose on the ruins of Pompeii

My new Italian friends who we worked on a project with at the University of Sapienza in Rome

Me jumping on the Pantheon

Gelato twice a day, everyday was our motto

 Just leaning on the Colosseo

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

3 Ways to Be Your Best Boilermaker

Posted on October 28, 2014 by Beata Strubel 

How do you plan to find success at Purdue and make the most of your Purdue experience? As we enter the latter part of the semester, you might be feeling a mid-semester slump and be looking for ways to re-energize and finish the year strong.

Fortunately, Purdue has many resources available tailored to your needs and experiences. I can’t begin to list them all, but here are 3 that I have found personally helpful. I recommend checking them out when you get to campus next year. You can stop in for more information during a campus tour or browse their websites for advice as you finish your high school career.  

1.       Center for Career Opportunities (CCO)
The CCO offers a variety of (free!) services, from Career & Major Exploration Counseling to resume/interview assistance to professional development resources. The CCO helped me prepare my resume for the Industrial Roundtable job fair my freshman year, and I use their website regularly to research potential employers. Their blog has great advice and tips on preparing for your career – from cover letter writing to improving productivity. Additionally, as a Purdue student, you have access to the Career Wiki, including career guides, Purdue-subscribed databases for Employer Research, additional interview & resume resources, and more.

2.       Supplemental Instruction
I can’t say enough about the importance of being proactive about your success in courses. Purdue provides lots of (free!) resources in this area also. One example is the Women in Science and Engineering Tutoring Program, where you can stop in to the residence hall for free math and science tutoring. Another is Supplemental Instruction, weekly peer-led study sessions for your introductory courses. These sessions were a great help with my freshman physics course. The SI leader helped us with extra practice problems to clarify concepts, and I felt more confident completing the homework and going into exams.

3.       Peer Success Coaching
I am also personally involved in this program as a Peer Success Coach. As coaches, we meet one-on-one with fellow students via regular meetings throughout the semester or walk-in consultations. We can guide you through studying for exams, getting involved in extracurricular activities, connecting with campus resources, exploring career options, and more. We are here to help you set and achieve your own academic, social, and personal goals while at Purdue.

For more information, check out the websites above or send me a note! (purdue.welink at gmail dot com) I’m happy to answer any questions you have about your Purdue experience. The WE Link team is here just for you so you can start making your Purdue connections before you even arrive on campus. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Finding YOUR Perfect University - A Student Perspective

Posted on October 21, 2014 by Beata Strubel 

How do you find a college that provides the “perfect fit”? The college search can be daunting, stressful, overwhelming.. It can also be exciting, inspiring, and engaging. The element of the new and unknown can be both thrilling and terrifying. In less than a year you will be living in a new place with new people and limitless opportunities ahead of you.

But how do you choose? The number of burger varieties at the dining court? The steps from dorm room to classroom? (Close counts – you might need to get there quick some mornings! Or maybe you’re looking for a nice stroll..) Countless sites provide rankings in various areas, but it’s often hard to understand what they mean. How do you get a feel for a campus in a one day tour?

The key that helped me choose Purdue was the people here – the students, the faculty, the professors, the community. From the moment I arrived on campus, I was welcomed by everyone I met. I could really visualize myself spending the next four years here. I saw the excitement in the students and their passion for what they were learning. I could tell they genuinely enjoyed their classes and meeting new students. They happily answered all of my questions.

I am now part of this Boilermaker family, and I can attest to all the great things I was told back when I was in high school. I love meeting future Boilermakers and sharing my experience. In every personal story I hear from a Boilermaker, I see a new perspective about the opportunities at Purdue.

Furthermore, Purdue partnered with Gallup this past spring to create the Gallop-Purdue Index, a new measure of the value of college. It uses “rigorous data about the overall success—at work and in life generally—of America’s college graduates.”

Confirming what I learned through personal stories, the poll shows that graduates who said they had a “mentor who encouraged my hopes and dreams,” “professors who cared about me” and at least one professor who “made me excited about learning” are three times more likely to be thriving and twice as likely to be engaged at work. Personally, I have experienced all of the above at Purdue. That is pretty exciting news.

I encourage you to browse through the results and see how else you can make the most of your college experience. Maybe you’ll find a few questions to ask students on your college visits. (Do you have a mentor who encourages your dreams? Do your professors care about you and make you excited about learning? Yes, yes, and yes.) Reach out to a student and ask away. We’d love to help you find YOUR perfect fit.

*If you’re interested in learning more, you can find the Index report here.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Guest Blogger Jenee Christensen: My Homecoming Court Experience

Posted on October 14, 2014 by Guest Blogger Jenee Christensen 

My college experience here at Purdue has been amazing.  I've had some really talented professors over the past three years, I'm involved in a wide variety of organizations, and I've had the opportunity to study abroad four times.  I love Purdue, and I have spent my time on campus trying to experience as much of Purdue as I can.  So when I first heard about Homecoming Court during my sophomore year, when a friend of mine was running for Homecoming King, I made a mental note that I wanted to learn more about this potential opportunity, and possibly even consider running my senior year.

Fast-forward two years: I decided to go for it.  I applied for Homecoming Court for a few different reasons.  First off, as I mentioned before, I love Purdue, and I wanted the opportunity to represent the student body in such a unique capacity.  I also love alumni - I firmly believe Purdue would not be the incredibly university is is today if it didn't have such incredible alumni support - so I wanted the opportunity to interact with and serve them through my role on Homecoming Court.  And finally, I wanted the opportunity to represent women in engineering, women in ROTC, and women from other segments of the student body who do not always receive a lot of recognition.

A lot of people have asked me what the process is like.  Last spring, I went on the Purdue Student Union Board's (PSUB) website and found the application online.  I was evaluated based on my leadership involvement, scholarships, and an essay I wrote about why I am proud to be a Boilermaker.  Around mid-May, I received an email from the PSUB Director of Homecoming that I would be on the Court - and everything moved very quickly from there!  Part of my responsibilities as a Homecoming Court member included volunteering at several PSUB events (including the BGR UnionFest, Homecoming Kick-Off Cookout, Homecoming Carnival, and Homecoming Trivia Night), as well as working with my partner to fund and manage our campaign.  I didn't know my partner, Tripper Carter, before Homecoming started (we were assigned to each other alphabetically; you don't have the opportunity to choose your partner), but he is an incredible guy and I'm so grateful I had the chance to get to know him and work with him.

The two weeks leading up to Homecoming were a blur - between campaigning and working at different PSUB events, I had almost no free time - but it was so cool to see all of our hard work culminate during Homecoming Weekend.  Friday, all the candidates (seven women, seven men) rode in the Boilermaker Night Train Parade.  This actually turned out to be my favorite event of the entire weekend - it was so much fun riding through Purdue's campus, enjoying the music and throwing candy to the crowd.  Saturday was packed with breakfast, the crowning ceremony, and the Homecoming game itself: the entire Court was introduced during halftime.  President Daniels came by to shake our hands, and it was cool to be able to share our experience with the entire student body.

Although I was not crowned Homecoming Queen, it was such a cool experience to be a part of the Homecoming Court.  I met some incredible fellow Boilermakers, made some incredible memories, and fell in love with Purdue all over again.  I feel incredibly blessed to have been chosen for the Homecoming Court, and to have received so much support throughout the process from my family and friends, both on and off campus.  As always, I am ever grateful, ever true, and I am more proud than ever before to be a part of Purdue.

Boiler Up!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Preparing for IR

Posted on September 11, 2014 by LilyAnn Peterson Gapinski

        You have probably heard by now that next week on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday something pretty big is happening here at Purdue, and that thing is IR. Purdue’s Industrial Roundtable (IR) is one of the largest student-run job fairs in the country, and it continues to grow each and every year. This year, over 400 companies will be attending looking to fill internship, Co-Op, and full-time positions.
         Because of IR’s size and reputation, it can be pretty intimidating your first year. A lot of freshmen think that it isn’t worth it to attend IR, because they cannot possibly compete with students older and more experienced than them, but that is not the case. Yes, it is more difficult to obtain an internship or Co-Op position as a freshman, but it is definitely not impossible. Some companies even specifically aim to hire freshmen.  I know many people who were able to get internships for the summer after their freshman year through IR. Even if you don’t end up finding an internship, it is still great to get experience talking to company recruiters, and practice selling yourself.
          Whether you are extremely serious about finding an internship position at IR, or you are just going for the practice, there are some things you need to make sure to do before the big day.

Update Your Resume: Make sure your resume is completely up to date with accurate and relevant information. Have people read through it to make sure you didn’t make any small errors. The Purdue CCO has free resume reviews as well which is a great resource to utilize.

Go to the Seminars: Monday all throughout the day many companies will be holding hour long seminars overviewing what they do and what opportunities they have available. This is a great chance to learn more about companies before going up to their booths during IR.

Do Your Research: Although the seminars will give you a lot of information, it is still a good idea to do additional research on the companies you are interested in. Many smaller companies do not hold seminars, so it is up to you to do all of your own research on them.

Decide Which Companies to Hit: With over 400 companies, you won’t have time to talk to them all, and you probably wouldn’t be interested in all of them anyway. Make a list of the companies you really like, and make a schedule of when to go to each company based on when you are available. All the information about where each company will be on Memorial Mall is in the IR Guidebooks that can be found around campus. Keep in mind that some companies are only here for one of the days, so make sure not to miss them.

Practice Your Elevator Pitch: When you go up to a recruiter during IR, you only have a few minutes to impress them. Make sure to plan out what you are going to say, and make yourself memorable. Information about how to construct a good elevator pitch can be found online at the Purdue CCO’s website.

Find Something Appropriate to Wear: It is important to look professional for IR, but keep in mind that you will be outside walking around Memorial Mall, so you will want to be in something comfortable as well. Make sure to stay informed about the weather forecast so you are able to dress weather appropriately.

IR is an amazing event that is unique to Purdue, and many great opportunities can come out of it. Keep this in mind, and make sure to take full advantage of it next week!

Good Luck Ladies!


Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Being a member of the Women In Engineering Pair Program

Posted on September 9, 2014 by Ashley Devore

Hello everyone, hope everyone is having a fantastic week! School is in full swing, and so many exciting things are going on! Here at Purdue University, organization callouts are in full swing; there is just so much going on! One really awesome group that I am in is the Women in Engineering Program’s (WIEP) Undergraduate Mentoring Program – called Mentors and Mentees (M&M). We just had our first meeting today and it was awesome!
               M&M connects older girls in engineering with younger girls in engineering. In each mentoring pair there is the mentor, the older girl, and the mentee, the younger girl.  Mentors are typically upperclassman, but sophomores can choose to be a mentor if they would like to as well. Mentees are freshmen and sophomores. The mentoring program participants meet once a month at monthly meetings, and pairs meet up once a week on their own. In addition, the program also holds social events such as arts and crafts, ice cream parties, and even an end of the year dance.
               One thing that M&M really focuses on is developing your coaching and mentoring skills. Even mentees get work on these skills, as they are really important in the professional world, and even in everyday life. During monthly meetings, we typically do some sort activity that allows us to practice our coaching and mentoring skills. For example, today our guest speaker gave us a workshop on how to properly coach someone, and then we practiced what she told us on our mentors/mentees.
               Another thing that M&M focuses on is developing professional skills. Some of our meetings are specifically about how to prepare for an interview or how to build your resume. These are really valuable and definitely help both mentors and mentees.

I joined the Women In Engineering M&M Program my freshmen year. At that time I was a mentee. I really loved having a mentee because she helped me through some tough times last year and helped show me all of the great resources that Purdue has to offer. This year, I am a mentor, and I cannot wait to start building my relationship with my mentee. I definitely recommend the M&M program to all freshmen girls because it is a great way to get to know older girls in engineering and is such an amazing resource. Plus you gain a new friend out it!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Spain Study Abroad

Posted on September 2, 2014 by Catherine Courchaine

This summer I had the amazing opportunity to study abroad in Spain. It was my first experience traveling outside of the United States, but I can assure you it won't be my last!

Although I devote most of my time to my Aeronautical Engineering degree, I have also been working on a Spanish minor. Languages have always been a passion of mine, and when I came to college I knew I would be continuing the Spanish classes that I had begun in high school. One great opportunity that Purdue offers is the chance to test into an upper level language course. By taking an entrance assessment, I was able to get a head start on my Spanish career at Purdue. After several semesters, I decided to finish the required courses for my major abroad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I chose to study for six weeks in Madrid with about forty other students from Purdue, taking the six credits I needed to complete my minor at a private university in the city of Madrid. The first course was a Spanish Culture and Civilization class that taught about Spain's history, geography, festivals, and traditions. The other course was the Art of El Prado, a course that taught about three Spanish artists whose works were in the Museum of Prado in Madrid. My favorite part of the class was being able to visit the museum every week to see the paintings in person!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               While I was in Madrid, I stayed with a host family, who cooked authentic meals and helped me with my speaking and listening skills by speaking completely in Spanish. I loved being able to immerse myself in the culture of Spain while learning about it.

On Fridays, we made several group trips to cities around Spain, including Toledo, Salamanca, Segovia, and Granada. I also made weekend trips with friends to Sevilla and even Paris, France!

The weeks flew by, but I enjoyed every second of my time in Spain. From exploring the beautiful city of Madrid, to giving presentations about regions in Spain, to meeting amazing friends that I am able to catch up with now that we have returned to Purdue, my study abroad experience has been unforgettable.