Hands down, my favorite and more importantly most fulfilling student involvement is the Freshman Academy program. You can read more about my experiences as a coach here. This year the Academy program has been the best it’s been in my 3 years of working on it. I’ve fortunately gotten to work with Dr. Yen: planning classes and activities with him has been a tremendous experience. So far we’ve discussed innovation, engineering reasoning, and creativity with our students. We’re now having them investigate the Grand Challenges of engineering by discovering and touring labs on campus that are pursuing research to tackle the Grand Challenges. I’ve got a great class as well: this past weekend I took them on a trip to Santa Monica. We spent the day out in the water, playing volleyball, and window shopping up and down the Promenade.
This year I’ve pursued a leadership role as a Lead Coach. This role doesn’t really reflect my work with my students, but more so my work with other coaches. I worked with other lead coaches to develop a more informative and engaging training process by increasing dialogue between new coaches (who had been a student in the Academy in the past year) and returning coaches. I also get to plan team-bonding dinners and events for coaches outside of work.