Penn State Engineering Ambassador Jessica Smith width=
Jessica Smith

Architectural Engineering
Class of 2017

Hometown: York, PA

High School: Central York

Extracurricular Activities: Society of Women Engineers, Women in Engineering Program, Penn State Athletics Employee, Student Society of Architectural Engineers, Illumination Engineering Society

Internship/Co-op/Research Experience: Lighting Design internship with Atelier Ten in New Haven, CT

Why did you choose to come to Penn State? I come from not just a huge Penn State family, but a huge Penn State Engineering family. I applied to other schools, but ultimately always knew that I'd end up at Penn State like the rest of my family. There's no other school out there that can compete with Penn State's engineering program and school pride, which is why I love it so much. Penn State is also one of the few schools with an accredited Architectural Engineering program.

What has been your best memory as an engineering student? Having the opportunity to speak at the Leonard Center Speaking Contest was an incredible engineering experience. It opened so many doors for me and has changed my views on presentations and public speaking. The influence that it had on my first internship is something that I never would have expected. Having great public speaking skills is incredibly valuable in any professional setting, and I'm glad that I was able to improve my skills throughout the contest.

What advice would you give a first-year engineer? Don't stress out too much. I promise you have time in your schedule to get everything done, so don't worry about it. I did almost no extracurricular activities outside of school and my job my first semester at Penn State, because I was so worried about the workload. It's never a good thing to get too wrapped up and overwhelmed in studies, give yourself a little free time!! It will allow you to de-stress and will even make you more efficient and focused when you do spend time on homework. It's true, I promise.

What do you plan to do after graduation? I will be moving to Northern Virginia to work as an electrical design engineer for Southland Industries.

What has been your best experience outside of engineering at Penn State? Outside of engineering one of my best experiences at Penn State was the Michigan homecoming game. Standing in the fifth row, being tossed in the air about 100 times, getting crushed as everyone squeezed together for the extra point, and singing arm in arm in victory with my favourite people and the whole student section. It's a day I'll never forget!