I applied and was accepted at several strong engineering schools, and awarded scholarships at all of them. Purdue was the most affordable with my financial aid package including a Trustees Scholarship, but it also has THE reputation for engineering. It became an easy choice.
Purdue's engineering reputation attracts funding as well as top employers. This opened the opportunity for me to have my 5-session co-op work experience. I've just completed my third rotation. I believe that this experience plus the company recruiters who come to Purdue will give me far more options for full time employment upon graduation than I would otherwise have at any other school. My parents don't have 4 year college degrees, and they don't have high incomes. Purdue is changing my life from a low-income, sacrificial situation to one that is satisfying and comfortable.
Purdue engineering is very challenging, to say the least. But the rigorous course material and evaluation are likely why Purdue produces engineers who are in high demand.
I plan to finish my two remaining co-op sessions before graduating in May 2013. I plan to go into industry because I've enjoyed my work experiences immensely. I hope to contribute in the field of alternative energy sources, ideally renewable sources.
From the bottom of my heart, I say thank you to the donors whose scholarship supplied a large portion of my financial support. Providing funding for me to stay at Purdue without a financial burden has eased a lot of worries and stress, and helped me to go where I want to in life. The fact that my hard work matters to people who I don't even know is humbling and encouraging.