Over four years ago, I filled out the application to USC and somewhat-confidently selected “Computer Engineering” as my major. I liked computers, and math, and robots, so it seemed logical. Although honestly, I had no idea what engineering really was. But astronauts and scientists and world leaders were engineers, so I wanted to be one too. Then, I took Introduction to Computer Science here at USC. While it was definitely interesting, I realized I couldn’t see myself spending the rest of my life working on computers and electronics. Thankfully, I had a lot of people who made me realize that that was okay.
In my Freshman Academy class, other freshman engineering students in other disciplines told me about what their introductory courses were like. My “professors” for the class, a junior and a senior student who were both undergraduate engineers, explained what some of the other engineering disciplines meant. I went to USC’s free engineering spotlights, where professionals and faculty highlighted what a career in a certain engineering field could be like. I talked to my freshman engineering advisor, who was not specific to my major. Everyone helped me decide that second semester, I would take a freshman civil engineering course. I didn’t have to worry about formally switching majors yet, my advisor assured me that she would make sure it all worked out.
The fall of my sophomore year, I knew that civil engineering was for me. I declared that as my major, and decided on environmental engineering as my emphasis, since that was the other Viterbi major that I felt strongly about. Flash forward to now, I’m a senior still graduating in four years, just like my advisor promised. I even have space in my schedule to take fun electives. And I have a full-time engineering job lined up for when I graduate, thanks to the engineering career fair on campus. I couldn’t be happier with my decision to be a Viterbi student. I just wish I could go back and tell my freshman self how well it all works out!Meet Molly