Professors here love to talk to students about subjects they're interested in. As you get more information, it becomes easier to decide whether to keep pursuing that subject or try something different.
"I loved pursuing computer science throughout high school and knew I wanted to be a computer science major. I've always had an interest in engineering as well, so this program is perfect for me. I was interested in game development, which progressed into an interest in artificial intelligence and cognitive science. I started asking professors about it, and they advised me to speak with Professor Christopher Dancy.
"He opened my eyes to the fact that this field involves so much more than game development. Artificial intelligence becomes applicable with machine learning, helping people learn about themselves, learning how the mind works and learning more about how people perform daily tasks. I began doing research that focused on checking how well someone performed a task when they were stressed. This research was a lot more advanced than I ever imagined and truly very interesting.
"My favorite class in my major was definitely Software Engineering & Design. The class is a miniature experiment in the real world — on the first day, the professor simply told the class, 'You are all now a part of a development team. You have a month to make an app — go!' There were a lot of sleepless and fun nights. My team actually developed a game. It was so exciting to finally implement my skills from start to finish.
"Professor Dancy has been such a positive influence on my experiences at Bucknell. He was my first computer science professor, and I had him for multiple classes after that. I started doing my research with him a few years ago — he has guided me every step of the way into doing what I am working on now. Research and development is definitely something I would like to be involved in moving forward. I want to go even beyond just development; I want to make a system that's different, and then develop that system. Right now, I know that I want to go to grad school first and then get a job in R&D.
"Most of the good opportunities I have been involved with at Bucknell began with just reading about something that sparked my interest. Professors here love to talk to students about subjects they're interested in. As you get more information, it becomes easier to decide whether to keep pursuing that subject or try something different. I have learned so much about asking the right questions and seeking more and more answers."
David is from Tannersville, Pa.
Posted November 2017