Rising senior Lauren Mueller, a civil and environmental engineering major from Downingtown, Pennsylvania, answers a few questions about student life at Carnegie Mellon, her internship experience, how she decided on her major, what she enjoys about Pittsburgh, and a memorable moment she's had as a member of the volleyball team.
1. What do you enjoy about campus life?
I enjoy how close knit the CMU community is. It is awesome being able to walk around campus and know about half of the people I cross paths with.
2. What do you get involved in outside of volleyball?
I am involved with the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) as the current social chair and I am also a part of the University Student Advisory Council (USAC) as a student representative for the Civil & Environmental Engineering Department. Aside from that I am a member of the Student Athletic Advisory Council (SAAC).
3. Tell us about your internship experience.
This summer I am interning at McCormick Taylor in Exton, PA, which is primarily a Civil Engineering company. McCormick Taylor focuses on bridges and highway designs and has offices up and down the east coast. My day-to-day work doesn't include the typical internship tasks like answering the phone or scanning documents. I am doing things such as reviewing and editing plan sheets for roadway designs, inspecting local bridges and roadways, creating design reports and inspections reports, and helping out with any other tasks they throw at me. It's pretty cool stuff and I am learning a lot!
4. What are your summer plans?
Pretty much my answer to number 3. I just work a lot! I've also been to D.C. a couple times and have been playing a lot of outdoor volleyball. I'll be traveling to Punta Cana right before the start of preseason.
5. What are you excited about next semester?
I am looking forward to taking my senior design class and actually doing some hands on stuff. It will be cool to pull together everything I have learned so far for this final Civil Engineering project. I am also taking an Energy and the Environment class which I am excited for because I am interested in learning more about alternative fuels and the environment as a whole. I have mixed feelings about having to look for a job, it is frightening and exciting all at the same time!
6. Why did you select your course of study – what class have you enjoyed the most?
I selected Civil & Environmental Engineering because I thought I wanted to be an environmental engineer and potentially travel to developing countries and help create and install water filtration systems there. As I've taken more classes I realize I am also very interested in structural engineering. My favorite class so far has been soil mechanics which is pretty much a class about dirt but it was actually interesting to see how soil affects so many things.
7. What class has been recommend as a MUST take class at CMU?
I have heard that the everyone should take 15-112 which is a computer science class because it apparently is difficult but fun and there is no better feeling than when you create your final project and see how much you've learned. I, however, was terrible at the intro class, 15-110, so I don't really have an interest in suffering through another coding class.
8. What have you enjoyed about living in Pittsburgh?
I love all the small towns and how there is so much to explore in the city. The food is also pretty good too!
9. What has been a memorable moment as part of the team?
Making it to the NCAA tournament my sophomore year after shockingly not making it my freshman year. It showed how much grit our team has and how we can't be knocked down easily.