Steel Design Project Analysis

It’s difficult for me to pick my favorite class or my hardest class this semester. Now that I’m a senior, I’m taking all upper division classes that cover a huge variety of topics, from Theory of Structures, to Mechanics of Materials, to Steel Design. I’ve also gotten to know the faculty in the civil engineering department over the course of my time here, which means that classes tend to be more fun, since my classmates and I are comfortable joking around with our professors and they’re happy to joke around with us.

If I have to pick my hardest class, however, I would probably go with Engineering Fluid Mechanics. The material isn’t necessarily difficult, but it is a lot harder for me to get excited about it. The rest of my classes this semester are really practical, I’m learning how to design steel structures and test building materials. Fluids, on the other hand, is a lot of equation derivation, physics, and theory. All good and important, but not very exciting. This tends to mean that I space out more during lecture, and put in less time outside of class to master the material. With our first midterm coming up soon, I’m beginning to realize that I have a lot of studying to do.

My favorite class, on the other hand, is probably Water Quality Management. In this class we discuss problems that effect the quality of the water supply, as well as methods to treat both water supply and wastewater. During my internship with Engineering Ministries International this summer, I worked really closely with the water supply and on-site wastewater treatment system that we were designing for a school in Uganda. Additionally, I have been doing research in a water quality lab for the past 2 years. Because of these opportunities, I’ve been exposed to a lot of the material we’re studying in class, but it’s really good to get a broader context for the information that I do know.

Overall, this should be a great semester, and I’m really excited for all the variety that I get to study.