Math and Computational Sciences Day featured students

Today is Math and Computational Sciences Day for LAS Week! Meet some of the outstanding students majoring in mathematics, computer science, and statistics in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and learn about their student experiences.


Edel Aron

Majors
Mathematics and Biology

Minors
Physics and Computer Science

Advice to future math majors
"Math is incredibly versatile and applies to a wide variety of fields, so consider expanding your range beyond gen eds with different classes and minors (or double majors), even if you know you want to be a pure mathematician. Also, be sure to pay attention to the weekly math mailers, there's a lot of great info and opportunities in there!"

Favorite course so far in my major
"BIOL 355: Plants and People. It was a fun class with a lot of real-world applications (especially since I love to cook)."

When I came to ISU, I never thought I would . . .
"Be able to spend a summer in Boston doing biostatistics research, then present that research as a poster at a national biomedical conference in the fall."

A unique hobby or skill you have
"I have a black belt in kung fu, and have been practicing for 15 years."

If you had an extra hour in the day, what would you do with it?
"I want to say go to the gym or try out more elaborate recipes, but in reality, I'd probably sleep. I don't want to graduate looking like a raccoon."


Tyler Bybee

Major
Computer Science

Favorite course in my major
"ComS 474, Introduction to Machine Learning with Dr. Kris De Branbanter. The professor was enthusiastic and he covered theory and practice well to give us a good intro to machine learning principles."

Best lesson learned during an internship
"If you are driven and want to do something specific, and a company doesn't help you do that in your first internship with them, don't return for a second internship unless there is a guarantee that you will be doing something beneficial to you, especially if you are still driven."

Advice to future computer science majors
"There is going to be a ton of programming in your future. Besides 'Start projects early,' which almost everyone will tell you, I will say to find a hobby at ISU unrelated to computer science. Something like rock climbing, running, or music will give your mind a break from programming and reduce your chances of getting burnt out. Just don't overdo your hobby."

One thing that surprised me about computer science is . . .
"How many group projects you can be involved in. When I started at ISU I thought computer science was only for hardcore programmers, but in order to be the most successful, you have to be able to work and communicate with a team. Communication skills play a much larger role than I anticipated."

I would encourage other students to check out opportunities outside the classroom like . . .
"Rock climbing and bouldering at State and Lied Gym! All of the rental gear is free for students, and you can meet people from all different majors who share a common interest, unrelated to academics."


Aisha Washington

Major
Statistics

Minors Economics and Data Science

I love my major because . . .
"Statistics is a tool that you can use to solve innumerable problems. I feel like I can use it to learn a bit about any area of interest ranging from social sciences to engineering topics."

Favorite course so far in my major
"My favorite course so far has been Stat 341. It explains theories behind many common statistical and probability-based concepts. The class has really deepened my knowledge of techniques that I've been practicing in the past."

Best lesson learned during an internship
"There's nothing that you can learn in a classroom better than through practice! This past summer I had the opportunity to intern with a Predictive Analytics team for an insurance company and I learned so much in those 10 weeks by trial and error. It has been motivating me to practice more of what I'm learning in class on real examples."

I would encourage other students to check out opportunities outside the classroom like . . .
"I have to give a shout out to the Women's Alliance for CyberSecurity (WACS), a club for students (especially women) to meet and learn about cyber defense topics. Branching out from your usual activities and checking out interesting clubs can be a great way to meet new people and discover a new passion."


Adrianna Kallis

Majors
Statistics and Software Engineering

I love my major because . . . "I love statistics because it allows me to use data when making decisions."

Best lesson learned during an internship
"During my research internship last summer, I learned the importance of building relationships with my co-workers outside of work. Being friends with the people I worked with every day made work more enjoyable and made me more comfortable to collaborate and communicate during our research."

Advice to future Statistics majors
"Find a second major or a minor in an area that interests you. Statistics is relevant and can benefit so many different areas, and having a focus area can help you stand out and better apply your statistical knowledge."

How an adviser has supported me
"My adviser has done a fantastic job supporting me throughout my time at Iowa State! She has helped me find my academic path and has encouraged me to pursue many leadership opportunities within the department."

One thing that surprised me about majoring in Statistics is . . .
"One thing that surprised me about majoring in Statistics is the close-knit community of the major. I knew the department was a smaller department on campus, but I was surprised to see familiar faces in all of my stat classes while being on such a big campus."

Proudest moment at ISU "My proudest moment at ISU was when I was offered a leadership position in my learning community for the spring semester of my freshman year. I didn’t expect to have an opportunity to be involved in leadership at such an early point in my college career, and I was thrilled at the opportunity to become further involved in the learning community."