University of Michigan, MSE Chemical Engineering, 2016
I moved to the USA from India when I was 21 years old to start my graduate journey at the University of Michigan. It was a daunting experience made easy by the students and the professors. As a graduate student at the University of Michigan, I was surrounded by some of the best minds in their respective fields which helped my develop — as an engineer and as a person. I gained a deeper understanding of chemical engineering principles and processes through the courses and laboratory research work.
Besides the core courses, we also had to choose elective courses which gave me the perfect opportunity to get cross-trained and be well-rounded I got the opportunity to work in a research lab which allowed by to apply my theoretical knowledge and get some hands-on experience. This exposure to both theoretical and practical knowledge helped me hone my analytical mind. I believe that the culture at the University of Michigan to encourage analytical thinking was crucial to my success both as a student and in industry. I currently work at Linde plc as a Development Specialist in research and development, which I got through networking with professionals during career fairs. I majority of my work is designing experiments and analyzing the data to improve the end product. The skills that I learned during my master’s have helped me excel at my job.
Reflection on the time I spent at U-M
You will be surrounded by curious minds from a myriad backgrounds. There are a lot of research and course options available to you. Even though most of your coursework will revolve around the preset core curriculum, you will also get the opportunity to explore other fields via the electives. My advice would be to not get buried in books all the time but rather invest in making memories. One of the best parts of your experience is going to be the friends you make during this time. Most of my cherished memories revolve around my second home the Duderstadt, where I spent my time doing group studies or hanging out with friends. The other things I explored were the activity clubs. There are several activity clubs organized by students I am sure you can find a club which matches your interest. Besides these clubs, there are heaps of social activities (UMix late night, etc.) taking place on campus. During my summer research, I would work during the day and then enjoy the live concerts/movie nights organized near the downtown campus. I had the best time of my life and I definitely recommend you to make the most of your time in Ann Arbor, too.