Christina Core // Senior, Chemical Engineering, Hometown: Hudson, OH

"Purdue Engineering is an extremely hard program, and some days will be harder than others, but you have to persevere and keep going. Surround yourself with determined and ambitious people. Make time for yourself and your mental health."

Campus Involvement:
National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) - President (2020-21)
Chemical Engineering Student Ambassadors - Vice President (2020-21)
General Mills - Research & Development (R&D) Intern (Summer 2020)

How has the Minority Engineering Program affected you as an engineering student? What do you get through MEP that you don't get from other programs on campus? 

I participated in the Academic Boot Camp (ABC) before my Freshmen year of college. At first, I was reluctant to dedicate 5 weeks of my summer to going to school early, I am extremely grateful that I had the opportunity to attend. I was able to get a head start in Calc 1, Chemistry, and was able to familiarize myself with coding languages. One of the best aspects of the program was getting to know other students who would be taking First-Year Engineering classes with me. There were roughly 40 other students with me, and I became friends with each of them, and through the program I was able to find my home away from home. Over the 5 weeks, I made friends who I consider my best friends now and got early exposure to college life.

Going into my freshman year, I wasn't exactly sure which engineering discipline I wanted to focus on. At first, I was leaning towards Biomedical Engineering (BME) because I wanted to develop prosthetics, but I always had a passion for cooking, hair care, and skin care. I was able to get help from MEP by talking with other students who had already chosen their engineering majors and they provided me with their advice and experience.

MEP is how I became interested in Chemical Engineering (ChE). It was not even a major I considered at the beginning, but I learned that I could pursue BME through ChE; in addition, I could pursue my passion for cooking and hair/skin care through ChE as well. Once I got into ChE, MEP opened the doors for me to connect with other students who were also in my major. With large class sizes, it was always great to see familiar faces and people who looked like me.  

What is your advice for incoming minority engineering students?

Never hesitate to reach out for help. It took me a long time to accept this advice because I always thought I could do things on my own. So, I had to learn the hard way by struggling through classes when I could have just reached out to my professors or the TAs for help. For me, attending office hours was vital for understanding hard topics and figuring out the professors thought process for exams. Getting help from the professor and TAs puts you in the right frame of mind for solving homework and exam problems. It also helps if you have a group of friends in your classes that you can rely on for help when you don't understand a certain subject or problem. 

What are your plans after you graduate?

After I graduate, I will be moving to Minneapolis, MN, to work at General Mills Headquarters as a Research and Development (R&D) Engineer. I have not yet picked which platform I will work on specifically, but I would love to work on the Big G Cereals like Cheerios of Cinnamon Toast Crunch or develop their Snacks brands like Gushers or Haagen-Daz ice cream. 

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