We had the great opportunity of interviewing Joshita Padala, a student from Virginia Tech about: College Life
Here are some of her qualifications:
Education Junior chair in the Association for Women in Computing at Virginia Tech
Public Relations chair for the VT Science Olympiad
Majoring in Computer Science
Here are some important words she shares:
"Networking opportunities like this enabled me to put my best foot forward and get many amazing opportunities. "
"In terms of difficulty, I would say if you work hard and actively work ahead and practice everything, college classes are not that difficult."
Q: How did you find internship opportunities in college?
A: Many colleges, specifically Virginia Tech, offer multiple career fairs and workshops where you can talk and connect with representatives from different companies. Networking opportunities like this enabled me to put my best foot forward and get many amazing opportunities.
Q: What are pros and cons of doing internships?
A: The biggest pros are gaining valuable experience, both technical and nontechnical. Working with other teammates in the company can serve as an example as to how your future is going to look and it can give you an idea on how you like to shape it. In terms of cons, there are definitely not any major ones. Although if you get an internship during the fall or spring semester you would have to be really good at being able to balance that school and work life.
Q: What’s a difference between high school and college courses?
A: In college courses you definitely have to rely on yourself more to learn and teach yourself. The professors in college are not gonna guide you through each and every step of the way, so you have to really make sure to keep your focus and not slack because then you will fall behind. In terms of difficulty, I would say if you work hard and actively work ahead and practice everything, college classes are not that difficult.
Q: How did you find programs to participate in in college?
A: In terms of Virginia Tech, they host this event called “GobblerFest”. And basically at this event all the different clubs are present in booths in which you can go talk to the club officers and get to know the purpose of the club and different activities they do. Other than that approach, social media and staying connected with all the happenings is a great way to find out more about everything that you can get involved in!
Q: What are your responsibilities as the Education Junior chair for Association for Women in Computing (AWC) and the Public Relations chair for Science Olympiad respectively?
A: As the Education Junior chair for the Association for Women in computing, my primary responsibility includes collaborating with other Computer Science clubs to host workshops for fellow officers and students. When hosting workshops I have to attentively pick a topic that would serve to interest many students. Another responsibility I have is to contact representatives for different companies to come talk in the workshops so students can get different insights.
As the Public relations chair for VT Science Olympiad I need to direct all the marketing and the public relations activities of the chapter, such as, creating eye catching social media posts to make sure students know of all the different events happening.
Q: Which extracurricular have you found to be most useful/most enjoyable?
A: In relation to my major, Computer Science, I found most of the technical workshops held by the different engineering clubs to be the most useful. Not only did these increase my knowledge but it also enabled me to connect with representatives from different companies to learn more about what it is like in the field. Most of these clubs also host social events where you can go and meet other members of the club and I found that enjoyable and it was nice to have a break from academics while meeting new people.
Q: Did you set goals for yourself before going to college?
A: Yes, I set so many goals for myself before going to college. Although some are still in the process, I would say that most of them have been met. And I think as a student going into college it is really important to set goals for yourself because the goals will enable you to work hard in order to reach them, and it is always good to keep in mind what you want
Q: What’s a major difference besides the obvious ones, between high school and college?
A: It is so easy to make friends. At first it might seem difficult, but you always have to remember how big most of these colleges are, and how many people are wanting to make new friends. As an out of state student, I was scared at first in making new friends and I did not think it would happen, but after attending events and meeting new people through all different kinds of activities it was one thing that I did not have to worry about at all. Another major difference between high school and college is that in college you have so much more free time. Obviously some of that free time can be used to study but you also have so much time to go out and do something else that you are interested in such as research. Lastly, the timings for the classes vary and you can make your schedule how you want it to be!
Q: Do you have anything else you would like to add? Any final words of wisdom?
A: Lastly, I would just like to say YOU GOT THIS! Everything can be scary and you might think that it is just you feeling like this, but trust me everybody has their own demon that they are fighting. But through it all you have to understand that you are definitely not alone, and you have many resources (like this) that can help you achieve your goals. The transition will definitely be a drastic change but always have your goals in mind and think about your future and how you would like to see yourself in 10 years, and don't stop working hard until you reach them. One more thing, always be yourself! Because being yourself is the best you can be. Apart from that, I wish everyone reading this the best of luck, and I hope you guys achieve all your dreams.
Learn more about Joshita and her experience on her LinkedIn account.
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