My spring project will be about me learning how to type over 100 words per minute. This can be an important skill for me in the future due to the nature of my major and how it’s focused on computers. I also feel that this is a fun way to learn something new rather than forcing myself to learn something I am not interested in.
The diversity event that I attended was the National Society of Black Engineers’ general body meeting. At this meeting, we talked about different events going on that everyone could attend that had topics that ranged from service hours and donations to the Annual Convention that the National Society of Black Engineers is attending. The main focus of this meeting, however, was African American hairstyling and what hairstyles seem more acceptable in the workplace. I enjoyed this meeting very much because of the questions that we were asked and how everyone was allowed to communicate with each other about something we all have to talk about some time. One of the questions, in particular, stuck with me. That question being “Is a job worth changing your appearance? If so, how much would you change?” This stuck with me because there does seem to be somewhat of a stereotype on what is acceptable and what is not when it comes to jobs and interviews.
Diversity and Inclusion impacts STEM in a way that is actually very important in the field. Diversity/Inclusion gives more people the opportunity to attempt to fix problems or work on things that STEM engineers may have been trying to fix for a long time. There is apparently a shortage of engineers, actually. According to bls.gov’s “STEM Crisis or STEM Surplus?” article, “Economic projections point to a need for approximately 1 million more STEM professionals than the U.S. will produce at the current rate over the next decade…” This goes to show that there should actually be more diversity and inclusion if we don’t want to end up being short and not having enough people working in the STEM fields available. Regardless of this statement, however, I believe that there is enough of a focus on diversity and inclusion. At Ohio State University, there are very many different student organizations and scholarships to the point where there are too many organizations for one person to handle. There are organizations for many of the races and ethnicities that one can think of off of the top of their heads.
At this meeting/event, I did have my beliefs challenged, but it was not a hostile environment. I had no issue talking about this kind of topic, as it is a very real “issue” that should be addressed properly. In fact, having civil conversations about these kinds of topics is fun for me. Since this was a very open and accepting group environment, no one needed to hold back anything. There could always have been an argument that sparked due to someone being offended, but it did not happen, nor did the chances of it happening seem high. All of the different perspectives I learned about from other people were very civilized, and I was open to understanding why they thought that.
Overall, I feel like I learned a lot about different perspectives on the matter of diversity in the workplace. Everyone has different opinions on what is acceptable or allowed and there is no way to tell if an employer doesn’t hire you specifically because of the way you look. Of course, there’s always the possibility, but there is a decently high chance that that is not the reason why. I learned a lot about my identity, and I was given the opportunity to actually think about myself and why I think certain things.
For my non-academic campus resource, I went to a one hour session of financial coaching. Of course, this is a private matter so I can not post a picture, but this coaching session has really helped me when it comes to managing my money and having a proper budget to last me the rest of the semester. One of the reasons as to why I chose financial coaching for my non-academic campus resource is because I’ve been noticing people use all of their given money on food instead of having a sustainable way of eating, and I did not want to run out of the money that the University has given me because there is always a chance that I won’t get money from any other sources for a long while, and if I truly run out at that point, there’s not much I can do to fix it. One thing we talked about in financial coaching was how often I eat because that often becomes the biggest money drainer for many students, and I am no different. Since I don’t eat very often, my coach told me that we can either save that topic for last or just make it a small amount compared to the total amount that I have, and then come back to it later. I decided to make it a small amount for now rather than have nothing planned for it, in case the time ran out. After talking about the food expenses, we moved onto hygiene-based purchases, such as soap and lotion. Since I shower every day, and one big box of soap can last me over a month and a half, soap wasn’t an issue. Lotion, shampoo, hair products, and toothpaste were also included in this category, and thus my budgeting for this was about $60.00 per semester. Next, there were the traveling expenses, but since I do not have a car, bike, or any other vehicle, this would just be $0 for me. After that, we talked about cleaning products such as laundry detergent and dryer sheets. These kinds of products are relatively cheap compared to the actual hygiene-based purchases because they last somewhat longer due to me not using them every day, but since the number of times I was my clothes vary on how impactful that wash may be, this amount also started small and would soon work it’s way up. Lastly, I came back to the eating expenses. I agreed with just using my swipes most of the time, and so I only budgeted about $15 a week, and then the laundry detergent purchases came out to around $30 a semester. Overall, I ended with about $50 to myself if I stuck to this budget, give or take about 10 dollars too.
Overall, the financial coaching session was very useful in the sense that now I am confident that I will not run out of money over the semester as long as I stick to my budget. This will also help me succeed in the future because now I know how to budget my money. The only thing to do now is to stick to my budget and make sure everything works out.
This semester, I joined the National Society of Black Engineers. The specific program within this picture was the Mentor-Mentee program kickoff, where I was allowed to meet my mentor and begin to bond with them through different games and conversations.
The overall experience was actually very helpful because we went through the event talking about different resources that we had, such as the tutoring and the supplemental instruction programs, and my mentor helped me with a few math problems when we had extra time. At the beginning of the event, everyone was playing card games so that we could have somewhat of an ice breaker to get to know everyone. They had Uno, normal cards, and a game called “apples to apples.” After getting to know my mentor, we went into one on one sessions where I was allowed to ask him more personal questions, which was really nice because now I know he has had experiences that I can learn from, and he’s from the same major as me. Now I also know that he can help me in certain classes, such as Computer Science and Engineering 2221, as well as the class after that (Software 2). This also goes to show me that I am not alone in my endeavors, and I have others who can help me throughout my college career.
As a whole, the experience was very interesting because I really enjoy meeting new people, and since this person will be helping me out throughout the semester (or year) then I would like to make a good first impression. He’s a very nice person, and we have very similar interests when it comes to schooling and the future, such as struggling to pick between specializing in artificial intelligence or in software development, having trouble finding people to study with in calculus, and trying to balance a social life along with school, and even a job on campus. After we did one on one sessions with the mentors, we came back together as a big group and played a game called “Two truths and a Lie” that was about the mentors and the mentees had to guess which one was the lie. My mentor’s lie was that he had 2 dogs, but he told me he only had a pit bull, so I won that round with my mentor. After that, we had another break to talk to everyone and congregate with other groups of mentees and mentors, and I had fun meeting new people that are first years like me, and I was able to make a study group for calculus with a very nice group of students, and we made a specific time every week to do work together.
Overall, this academic resource will help me very much throughout my career as a first year, as well as my career as a student as a whole. I appreciate this help very much, and I hope to give back to this program in the long run by becoming a mentor myself.
The Ohio State National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) is a STEM-based organization that I met during the student involvement fair. I went with two friends, but we were split apart by the busy traffic going on at the time. I had very slight troubles finding an organization that I could fit with at the time, and people advised for me to make my own, but that’s not my kind of thing unless I know for sure that it will work. I picked the National Society of Black Engineers because I could relate to them the most and I wanted to broaden my awareness on campus, as well as make better connections throughout the university. The first meeting we had was very small, and it was just to meet the students and faculty running NSBE. Since I was one of the only ones to go, I actually became decent friends with everyone that was in the room at the time. The first meeting where everyone was there was also quite fun, but I didn’t have any friends to go with because I was the only one of my high school to come to NSBE. That meeting informed its new members about different resources that they could use, as well as have a few games to play. Afterward, we were allowed to talk to others to connect with them, and I met with Dr. Edwin Lee. He is the director of the tutoring/supplemental instruction program at The Ohio State University, and I have signed up for the tutoring program so that I may succeed in the future. Here’s a picture of when we were playing the game.
Overall, I think the benefits of student organization membership is that you will have someone to turn to whenever you need something while also keeping your own independence. The student leaders are very kind and don’t mind helping anyone out in any way at all, and I could definitely see myself becoming a leader some time down the road. Time management is very easy for this organization, as they only have meetings every other Wednesday, and my Wednesday’s are very open, but I can always incorporate those dates into my calendar so that I can make sure I have time. Lastly, I think the size of the university and the crazy high number of student organizations will impact a students’ involvement in a positive way because that means there will be more chances for each student to relate to an organization if they truly want to. Even if they don’t really want to, it’s completely possible that they will have friends who join student organizations, and those friends will ask them to join so that they can have more time together or something like that. Although some people don’t enjoy social situations, I believe that they are very healthy to have, even on a daily basis. So much so that I think everyone should join a student organization at some point in their educational career.
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Hello everyone! My name is Marcellous Sledge, and I am a first-year STEM EE Scholars student. I intend to study Computer Science & Engineering with a focus on Software Engineering and Programming Languages. Physics is also something I’m considering. As a long term goal, I’d like to find out just how much computers can help people, and then advance them further so that they can help even more people. Professionally, I’d like to have a career with a computer that researches computers and how they can get better. Technology is advancing each and every day and I want to be a part of that. I am mainly motivated by my fascination with computers, but I am also motivated by my family. Although I haven’t grown up with many computers, the ones I have had have made a big difference in my aspirations. When I’m not studying or doing work, I like to spend time with friends as well as learn about what they’re doing. I also enjoy reading about theoretical physics, even though I may not always understand it fully.
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