During this year, I completing my MEng in Computer Science at MIT. My thesis research was dedicated to understanding the influence of venture capitalists on startups, in the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence. I was a teaching assistant for two MIT courses: Principles and Practice of Assistive Technology and User Interface Design & Implementation. I also served as a Graduate Community Fellow for the MIT Language Conversation Exchange and became quite active with the MIT Outing Club.
To conclude my year of international projects, I traveled to the home of the nomads - Mongolia. There, I led MIT's first initiative in Mongolia to deliver GSL, a summer course designed to teach top university students the technical and entrepreneurship skills they need to launch a successfull mobile app startup business.
After my experience at Capgemini, I wanted to focus on one important aspect of innovation - ideation. I joined a lab at the Grenoble School of Business that specializes in the development of "serious games" - games with a purpose beyond simply having fun. While there, I developed unique strategies for using games to inspire people to think differently and more innovatively.
For several years I fantasized about working abroad. I decided to take a gap year after MIT and made my dream come true - six unforgettable months working as an IT consultant at Capgemini in Paris, France in their lab'innovation.
Arguably my most enjoyable year at MIT, I throroughly enjoyed all my classes - especially the Assistive Technologies class. I also enjoyed TA'ing for Professor Cuthbert's Music Fundamentals Course. Finally, I fed my hunger for adventure by serving as the Mountain Bike Team Captain.
In association with the MIT VI-A Internship Program, I worked as an engineering intern at Booz Allen Hamilton. I worked to develop software for Google Glass, a challenging yet rewarding project.
After such an adventurous summer, I was motivated to seek new activities on campus. I joined the MIT Cycling Team and raced both mountain bike and road seasons, although I had never cycled before. I also volunteered as a science mentor for Girls in Boston. I especially enjoyed my computer science classes, including Artificial Intelligence and User Interface Design. During IAP I was honored to travel to participate in the MIT France Scholars program, a 2-week fully funded immersive cultural experience in Paris.
I spent 3 exhilerating months living and working in Paris, France. I interned at ISIR, an Artifical Intelligence and Robotics Lab. I also engaged with the community while improving my French and knowledge of French culture. Every day was an adventure and a learning experience, and I loved every minute.
I discovered the challenge of MIT computer sciences courses, but overcame these by developing new learning strategies. I founded the McCormick Student Art gallery that decorated the halls of my dorm and recognized student's artistic abilities. I also enjoyed playing my clarinet in MITWE, taking French and music courses, and ice skating. During IAP I UROP'd in the Distributed Robotics Lab where I worked developing MATLAB code to run KUKA Youbots and Roomba Robots.
I returned home for the summer to work through Google Summer of Code on GCompris, an open-source software suite of children's computer games. I also travelled to Germany for two weeks with Professor Cuthbert and the music21 project thanks to a MISTI Seed Fund Grant. Finally, I spent a week in Spain presenting at and learning from the GNOME GUADEC Conference.
MIT proved to be a wonderfully stimulating and exciting academic and social environment. I found a home in the Annex of McCormick Hall, and enjoyed my introductory courses. I also joined MITWE, the MIT Wind Ensemble. Less than a month into Freshman year, I began UROPing with Professor Cuthbert on the music21 project, which I continued year long. This project proved to be an incredibly influential technical learning experiences, thanks especially to my mentor Professor Cuthbert.
In association with the Google Anita Borg Scholarship I won, I was invited to participate in Google's 3-week computer science summer program in Mountain View, CA. Yes, Google HQ is an amazing place and Googlers are pretty awesome.
I interned for 8 weeks at the NASA Glenn Research Center in Cleveland, Ohio. Under the direction of Herb Schilling, I developed an education outreach miniature Mars rover which is still in use. Herb continues to be a close mentor for me, and this internship remains one of the most defining academic experiences of my life.
I was awarded the 2010 FIRST Robotics International Dean's List Award for having demonstrated extraordinary devotion to advancing science, technology, engineering, and math throughout my community. I received over $3,000 worth of technology prizes and a trip to FIRST headquarters in Manchester, New Hampshire to meet Dean Kamen, founder of FIRST.
I founded a series of summer robotics camps for children. The camps have been run for 6 consecutive years, attended by an estimated 1,000 students to date. Camps have earned the NHS FIRST Robotics team ~$30,000.
I founded a middle school robotics program which organized students into teams and prepared students for competitions. I also led a rookie robotics competition annually. During the 4 years I ran the program, an estimated 200 student participantated. I also supervised ~50 mentors and coaches for teams. I earned my Girl Scout Gold Award for this project in 2009.
I developed a fantastic academic foundation at NHS, thanks to the dedicated teachers and administration. I played clarinet in the NHS band and U of M Youth Ensembles. I spent many hours with my FIRST Robotics team, programming the robot's autonomous mode in Labview and leading team outreach efforts.
I was born in California, and moved to Michigan when I was 10. I spent hours playing with my 2 younger sisters and older brother. I developed a love of learning, cultivated by educational vacations and family "field-trips". I joined several sports teams, a lego robotics team, and a girl scout troop.
"What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us."
Henry David Thoreau