"UBC Engineering will give you so many ways to get involved and there are so many opportunities out there."
- Degree: Bachelor of Applied Science
- Campus: Vancouver
Year: Finished third year (as of July 2023)
Why did you want to study engineering?
I didn't really know what I wanted to do out of high school, and I was considering a career in politics or law. But I had an aptitude for STEM classes and my parents and family encouraged me to do engineering. It seemed like a good, prosperous career. I also saw it as a career where I could use my talents and follow my passion for environmental sustainability.
How did you choose your specialization in environmental engineering?
I was interested in sustainability and knew that UBC Engineering integrates a sustainability perspective in every single department. An electrical engineer might work on power distribution systems. Chemical engineers might develop processes that are more eco friendly. But when you're in environmental engineering, it's very hands-on – and that appealed to me. You have to interact with communities. You're out in the field doing tests in natural environments. If you're in environmental consulting, you work with clients that could include Indigenous communities, municipalities and corporations looking to reduce their impact.
Environmental engineering is very much in the real world and very practical. You're on the front lines of pushing sustainability for the world, protecting ecosystems, and creating and advocating for systems that are more eco friendly.
I love the community aspect as well. It's a very friendly program with lots of group projects and amazing professors.
Are you involved in any clubs or teams?
I really enjoy being part of activities that promote student engagement. One year I was the E-Week rep for the Environmental Engineering Student Association and organized the E-Week team for a big engineering competition that happens in January. I then transitioned into a more student-life oriented role to organize events and volunteer for outreach at career fairs. In September I will be the VP Spirit for the Engineering Undergraduate Society and will be organizing a ball for the end of E-Week.
What kind of impact do you hope to have with your engineering degree?
Environmental Engineering is one of those fields that is rapidly changing and the scope of our work is expanding day in, day out. There are so many opportunities to follow through on my goal of making a difference in my community. That was always my motivation, no matter if I was an engineer or a lawyer. Our program director Dr. Madjid Mohseni, for example, specializes in providing drinking water to remote First Nations communities that have been under boil water advisories. It is inspiring to see the impact of that technical work on providing clean water, protecting ecosystems and improving people's quality of life. You are there in a community, making lives better.