Electrical (Computer) Engineering, Class of 2020
Chevy Chase, Maryland
My name is Maddie and I’m a junior from Bethesda, Maryland studying Electrical (Computer) Engineering with a specialization in Video Game Programming. On campus, I have served as Social Chair and am a member of the professional engineering fraternity Theta Tau, and am a part of the entrepreneurial organization Spark SC, the center for student innovation on campus. I also am an associate editor of Illumin Magazine, Viterbi’s student magazine centered on engineering in daily life, and follow my passion for writing through the Thematic Option English and Writing Honors program. Over my summers, I’ve interned in Seattle and Silicon Valley at Facebook as a Software Engineering Intern, and followed my passion for Virtual Reality at Oculus LA this past summer. In my free time, I enjoy hosting jam sessions to sing and play piano with friends, going on skiing and hiking trips in California, and searching for the best sample sales and/or ice cream in LA!
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Check out what I have been up to in my recent blog posts!
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More About Me
My Netflix Obsessions
Though it is technically Amazon Prime, Fleabag has been my biggest obsession lately–hello Emmys! Though it isn’t for everyone, the dark breaking-the-fourth-wall humor of the show makes me laugh out loud (and sometimes is how I imagine my reaction to life events).
Theta Tau is a national co-ed professional engineering fraternity aiming to promote service, fellowship, and professionalism among its members. Our chapter has hosted events such as our own career fair, teaching robotics to K-12 kids, and beach bonfires. Theta Tau provides a unique opportunity for mentorship across majors, and creates friendships among its community of respected peers that last a lifetime.
Spark SC inspires innovation and an entrepreneurial community on campus through events like the Startup Career Fair, Hack Nights, and Make-a-thons to bring together students across all disciplines including engineering, art, business, and more. As a board member, you collaborate on small committees to accomplish a goal or put on an event collaboratively with other dedicated peers. I am a member of USC Hackers and Graphics, where I have gained experience putting on Hack Nights for students, and have learned tools such as Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop to create a cohesive brand for events.
Illumin Magazine is a student-written, student-published online magazine cited by scholars around the world. We focus each issue around a cohesive theme, and all of our articles center on applications of engineering in daily life. As an editor, I read exciting articles on topics like the physics of tennis, the engineering behind theme parks, or AI facial recognition. Editors choose and edit articles to be published, and participate in branding, marketing, and social media outreach during meetings.
My Favorite Things About USC
My favorite USC tradition is Springfest, a concert put on by student government with awesome headliners free to all students! This year, Trippie Redd was the headliner, but I had a great time seeing other bands too, such as the indie band Still Woozy and rapper J.I.D., with a wide variety of performers suiting everyone’s music tastes. I always go with an energetic group of friends, and our tradition is to dance until we can’t anymore, then to explore the food trucks and art offered at Springfest!
I love my Electrical Engineering and Computer Science classes, but along with those, my Thematic Option (TO) classes have been one of my favorite parts about being an engineer at USC. There has never been a dull moment in my TO classes, with discussion-heavy class and amazing professors! One of my favorite classes discussed the intersection of illusion, critique, and science, and I am currently taking a class where I learn about natural disasters across the world!
My Major: Electrical Engineering
How I Picked My Major
I was undecided in my engineering major my freshman year and took ENGR 102, a class where I could learn about different major options, to hear from each department. As a sophomore, I chose Mechanical Engineering and stuck with it for a year since it offered many broad applications, but felt less engaged in my classes and less driven by a career passion than my peers in the major. After discovering my enjoyment of coding over summer internships, and my passion for virtual reality mid-sophomore year, I decided Electrical Engineering would be a better fit for my interests with a combination of hardware and software applications and switched majors as a junior. Still graduating on time with my peers, I couldn’t have chosen a better major as I have immensely enjoyed my Electrical Engineering classes and their applications.
Passion in my Field
I love the power that VR and AR technologies have to offer us new perspectives and experience things we never could previously imagine.
My Computer Engineering emphasis has given me a solid understanding of computer architecture, and I love problem-solving centered in code. I have gotten do to many Software Engineering internships with my major!
I find the intersection of Electrical Engineering and the signals in the human brain fascinating. This is especially relevant with Brain-Computer Interface technologies and I hope to explore the ethics of such technologies in VR/AR.
Passion in the Classroom
My Favorite Courses
I took this class for my minor, and created many 2D and 3D games while building upon my C++ skills (our final project was a 3D parkour first-person game). Though the topics list sounded daunting at first with vectors, 3D math, and matrices, the class turned out to be incredibly fun and was not stressful with teachers who are always available to help students!