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Student Spotlight: School of Engineering

Posted by on Friday, October 20, 2017 in General Information, Student Life, Vandy Bloggers.

What’s it like to be a student at Vanderbilt? You can learn a lot about life at VU from our website or from our publications (which you can receive by requesting more information). For a closer look at a specific academic program, student organization, or activity, however, there’s no substitute for hearing directly from Vanderbilt students. We make that easy for you with our Contact-a-Student page, which allows you to reach out to students across the university with a wide range of interests and activities. To help you dive in, we’re bringing you a series of profiles of some of the students featured on the page.

Today, we start the series with students from the School of Engineering. Feel free to reach out to these students or explore the contact a student page to connect with current students.

Gabrielle Betancout
Class of 2019
Engineering Science
Johnsburg, IL

Why Vanderbilt

I’m from a really small town and wanted to find a place that would feel like the community at home but also allow me to grow.  When I came to tour Vanderbilt, my mom approached these two random girls who were eating lunch and asked them what they thought about the school here.  They spent the next 10 minutes telling me about they’re experience at Vanderbilt and why they love it so much.  I feel like that experience really represents the type of community you’ll find at Vanderbilt, where students are constantly lifting each other up regardless of if they know the other student.  Vandy has really become my home and I can’t imagine being somewhere else.

Jad El Harake
Class of 2018
Biomedical Engineering
Beirut, Lebanon

Describe your experience becoming a part of the Vanderbilt community.

As an international student, I wasn’t sure how easy it would be for me to fit in at Vanderbilt. But right off the bat, as soon as I moved in, I realized how nice everyone here is, to the point where whenever someone asks “what surprised you most after you started college in America?” my answer is how friendly the environment is. It was a difficult transition, much like any transition is, but everyone at Vandy made it much easier.

Zeinab Rashed
Class of 2020
Computer Science
Staten Island, NY


Describe a favorite activity/organization and why you like it.

VandyHacks is an organization that holds a large hackathon at Vanderbilt for hundreds of college students across the nation. It’s an amazing organization because of the amount of effort that is put into it and the weight and reputation it holds in the engineering department and computer science community worldwide. Being able to contribute to making this incredible event is super exciting, as I am a passionate CS student and a hacker myself.

Kenny Wang
Class of 2018
Computer Engineering
Shenzhen, China

Describe your experience becoming a part of the Vanderbilt community.

I found my place in the Vanderbilt community probably as soon as on the first day I moved in. The first-year Commons is what really built my Vanderbilt experience. I had the most amazing RA, floormates and Faculty Head of House my first year living in North House. As an International student, I don’t have the chance to go back home often, but they built me a new family I can turn to whenever I need them!

Spencer Kallor
Class of 2018
Mechanical Engineering
Parkland, FL

Describe a favorite class and why you like it.

My favorite class at Vandy so far was my Mechanical Engineering module. Getting to learn about mechanical engineering while building a motorized Lego car to compete in a series of competitions between my classmates was a great way to start off my first year in the engineering school.

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  • Rakesh Krishnan

    December 22nd, 2017

    Am impressed about the student how they enjoyed their school of engineering in vanderbilt