It’s crazy to think that I’ve only got a couple weeks here to finish off my senior year. Thankfully, I will be back next semester to continue on with my education, and I recently got accepted to the PDP program for Chemical Engineering! I’m still making some decisions, but I am excited for the possibility of continuing to study engineering at such a great university.
I want to discuss my involvement in a professional organization at USC called Queers in Engineering, Science and Technology (QuEST)! Well, I founded it. Last year, a few of my other LGBT friends came up with the idea of having a Viterbi organization for queer students. This past year, I founded the organization as a part of Out in STEM (a national organization for LGBT undergraduates in science and technology). As an affiliate organization, I also established our club as part of the Viterbi School of Engineering and the Queer and Ally Student Assembly. This was a great decision since we have access to so many resources at USC!
We have done so much for our first year as an established organization on campus. With my Executive Board, I was able to implement a number of career events for queer students in STEM fields at USC. We held Viterbi’s first LGBT resume workshop with the Career Connections center. We formed a successful mentorship program with Northrop Grumman, which led to site tours and dinners and cafe meetups. We held professional events with the CIA, PlayWerks and OUT for Work. We had numerous social events, from decorating rainbow cupcakes to cookies! I am so proud of the work that we have done, and I cannot wait to see what the future holds for this Viterbi organization.
In every job interview I have had, there is always a question about my leadership capabilities. I am so thankful for the opportunity I had to grow my leadership skills through QuEST and I can not think of a better way to give back to the USC community than leaving a legacy for other queer leaders in the STEM field. Starting this organization has certainly allowed me to grow into a person that I never thought I could be and I hope that it continues to do the same for other #ViterbiAdmit! Fight on!