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Meet the Engineering Ambassadors

group shot of all the Engineering Ambassadors

   

Interested in meeting one on one with an Engineering Ambassador to learn more about what it’s like to be an engineering student at UW?
Engineering Ambassadors Chloe Lagadon, David Phan, Rudy Toepfer, and Mustafa Balikci are currently available to meet with you! Find their profiles and how to schedule a meeting with them below.

Catherine Do

Catherine Do

Lead Engineering Ambassador she/her

Hometown: Lynnwood, WA     Major: Chemical engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose UW because of campus and all the opportunities in research, education, and career development. I was also looking forward to meeting people from all different backgrounds! I believed it was a place where I could be challenged to reach my full potential.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose to pursue engineering because I wanted to positively impact the world by bettering people's everyday lives! Through engineering, you are able to continue to challenge yourself and grow by coming up with innovative solutions to problems impacting society or developing products for people to use. It incorporates real world application with the core principles of math, physics, and chemistry which I have always had a passion for.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Adam Scott

Adam Scott

he/him

Hometown: Austin, TX     Major: Civil engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman (Running Start)

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Sustainability Curriculum Coalition

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms)

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I loved the atmosphere around UW immediately. I lived nearby and could easily run through to see the buildings and how well the students mingled. I especially got this feeling from UW honors, which, on top of a very solid engineering program, was the main draw of the school.

Why did you choose engineering?

Have always loved puzzles and problem solving since forever. As a kid I loved puzzles and Legos, and I grew up learning engineering from professionals during high school. Now that I've had experience in the construction industry, I can see how my work impacts the lives of craft, managers, customers, and civilians.

Expected graduation: June 2024

Afrah Zaheer

Afrah Zaheer

she/her

Hometown: Redmond, WA     Major: Human centered design & engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Pakistani Student Association

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Commuter

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I've lived in the Seattle area my whole life so attending UW was one of my main goals, since I wanted to stay close to home. I had also visited the campus a number of times before and loved how beautiful it was, and learning about the great variety of opportunities the university provided.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose to pursue engineering because it's such a diverse field with so many routes you can take. I always wanted to work in STEM, and by deciding to study engineering at UW, I knew that I would be able to achieve my goal of using technology to improve people's lives.

Expected graduation: June 2025

Alec Busby-Frey

Alec Busby-Frey

he/him

Hometown: Longview, WA     Major: Civil engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Climbing Club, ASUW ambassadors, Starbucks, intermurals.

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose to go to UW because it was the most affordable school with the best engineering program. I also love washington and wanted to stay somewhat close to home. This has allowed me to have easy access to visit my family and also my favorite activities like hiking and skiing.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because it was a broad field that could lead to diverse job opportunities. I also liked how leadership and imagination was incorporated in the major and also math and science are my favorite subjects.

Expected graduation: 2025

Ben Li

Ben Li

he/him

Hometown: Taiwan     Major: Electrical engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

TOSA, ARUW

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

UW has one of the most inclusive and diverse community. Coming from Taiwan, I feel the sense of belonging at UW.

Why did you choose engineering?

In the time of rapid technological and social changes, I'm excited to createa a impact on this world. In this field, I'll never be bored.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Catalina Kashiwa

Catalina Kashiwa

they/she

Hometown: Edmonds, WA     Major: Electrical & computer engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman (Running Start)

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

StageNotes, Society of Women Engineers

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Engineering Living Learning Community in Maple Hall

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I was excited about the opportunities that attending UW would provide with well-known engineering and research programs while also being able to stay in-state.

Why did you choose engineering?

I really enjoyed doing science labs in high school, but didn't want to feel constrained to one subject. I felt like engineering was a way to encompass my various interests in physics, biology, and arts while giving me the opportunity to work with others and their unique interests.

Expected graduation: June 2024

Chloe Jackson

Chloe Jackson

she/her

Hometown: Woodinville, WA     Major: Civil engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Catholic Newman Center

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose UW because it was close to my family, had a really beautiful campus and I knew it was going to challenge me. In hindsight, I also am happy to have such a large school because it means many many opportunities to get involved and find what you like.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because its a field for problem solvers and has an impact on others! There is great satisfaction in applying the skills you learn to the problems that matter the most to you.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Chloe Lagadon

Chloe Lagadon

she/her

Hometown: Honolulu, HI     Major: Materials science & engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

Schedule a meeting

 

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

iGEM, Filipino American Student Association (FASA), Society of Women Engineers (SWE), Bioengineers without Boarders (BWB)

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms)

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I choose to attend UW because of the affordability and closeness to home where I could easily see family. UW had also offered many different types of programs for study abroad and research that I could explore and learn more about along the way.

Why did you choose engineering?

Engineering is a chance to improve and create different solutions to problems within the world today. For me I thought that was the perfect way to share my own experiences, and bring my own perspective on these solutions in a unique way.

Expected graduation: June 2025

David Phan

David Phan

he/him

Hometown: Renton, WA     Major: Electrical & computer engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

Schedule a meeting 

 

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Jazz Directory, Music for Charity, Project Sidewalk, BCME Lab

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing, Greek life housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

UW is a huge school with boundless opportunities. A wide variety of peers and staff from around the world and companies large and small coming to UW makes it hub for connections and information that makes the education and experiences here worthwhile.

Why did you choose engineering?

Engineering is not about knowing everything about one subject, but rather having the skill set to learn about any subject to solve whatever problem is at hand. As someone who loves to delve into any subject I get my hands on, engineering is the perfect area for me to get my hands on any subject matter.

Expected graduation: June 2024

Emily Leung

Emily Leung

she/her

Hometown: Bellevue, WA     Major: Mechanical engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Society of Women Engineers (SWE), Bioengineering Without Borders (BWB), Hong Kong Student Association (HKSA)

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms)

Why did you choose to attend UW?

After hearing about UW through my parents my whole life, I was full of anticipation when it was time for college visits. Seeing the big campus and the peaceful ambiance of the student population made me excited to be a part of the community. The multitude of opportunities and resources offered to students ultimately resolved my decision to chose UW.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering as I was interested in math and the sciences wanted to find work in the medical field. I believe that being able to integrate technical skills into finding solutions for real-world problems is a very meaningful career to have.

Expected graduation: June 2025

George Fennell

George Fennell

he/him

Hometown: Seattle, WA     Major: Materials science & engineering

Entered UW as a transfer

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Global Renewable Infrastructure Development (GRID), Undergraduate Research in Materials Science & Engineering (URMSE), STEM Pals

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

UW is a great research university, and the materials science and engineering department had exactly the kind of curriculum I'm interested in. It's got a beautiful campus in a beautiful, commuter-friendly city, and being a public university in my state made it very financially compelling.

Why did you choose engineering?

I want to understand the world around me, I want to solve problems, and I want to have a successful career. Studying engineering is a way to do all that at the same time from a position of agency.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Itzel Arriaga Hernandez

Itzel Arriaga Hernandez

she/her

Hometown: Lacey, WA     Major: Mechanical engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Riverways Education Partnerships

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms)

Why did you choose to attend UW?

As an in-state student, I knew Seattle was a great city with countless opportunities! I was also looking into majoring in engineering and so I was able to learn that UW had many great resources and programs for engineering students.

Why did you choose engineering?

Growing up, I’ve always been interested in STEM and saw engineering as a creative way to solve real world problems. I was also surprised at how engineering could be applied to so many fields, which is why I chose it.

Expected graduation: June 2024

Jenifer Mendez Pacheco

Jenifer Mendez Pacheco

she/her

Hometown: Snohomish, WA     Major: Bioengineering

Entered UW as a transfer

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

LSAMP – Louis Stokes Alliances for Minority Participation, NACME – National Action Council for Minorities in Engineering, SHPE - Society of Hispanic Professional Engineer, Unidas Seremos

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms)

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose UW because it is one of the few universities in the state of Washington that offers a Bioengineering major. I also felt that its large campus size and renown would open the door to many new opportunities. Furthermore, its location in Seattle would allow me to explore city life while also being near my family.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because it is an interdisciplinary field with an overall goal of creating a better and more equitable future. It would allow me to create innovations that would help others while also allowing me to grow and challenge myself as an individual.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Johnny McKinley

Johnny McKinley

he/him

Hometown: Lakewood WA     Major: Chemical engineering

Entered UW as a transfer

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose UW because of the high quality engineering programs available here. Along with the location being close to my family.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because I love problem solving and asking questions. I've always loved understanding how things work which is a huge part of engineering.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Lindsey Miller

Lindsey Miller

she/her

Hometown: Wasilla, AK     Major: Chemical engineering

Entered UW as a transfer

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Apartment-style campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

UW is a well-regarded school that offers a chemical engineering major. Once you are accepted into ChemE, it takes only seven quarters to complete the program, which was appealing to me because this is my second bachelor's degree and I am eager to return to work. Faculty and support staff in the major are also accomplished, warm, and supportive, making it a good experience.

Why did you choose engineering?

After my first degree, I worked abroad, teaching English as a second language. I met engineers who were also working abroad during this time. Engineering appealed to me because it offers a lot of personal freedom (including possible work abroad if you want it) while also giving back to the world.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Marianne Esnaurrizar

Marianne Esnaurrizar

she/her

Hometown: Redmond, WA     Major: Bioengineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Bioengineering without borders

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

As I began looking for colleges, I wanted to be part of an institution who valued inclusion, innovation, and collaboration. UW along with a beautiful campus holds these values with high regard and are what inspire me to continue my education. UW is also one of the leading institutions in respect to medical research and development which I am interested in.

Why did you choose engineering?

In school, I always liked math and science classes but did not think engineering was the right fit since I wasn’t interested in traditional engineering disciplines. To my surprise, I found engineering majors at UW that included my interest of the intersection between medicine and molecular science. I also became an engineer because I want to help solve real world problems that have large impacts on society.

Expected graduation: June 2025

UW logo

Mustafa Balikci

he/him

Hometown: Lynnwood, WA     Major: Civil engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman (Running Start)

Schedule a meeting

 

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Turkish Club

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I really wanted to learn about multiple engineering disciplines so I can find what suits me best. I also wanted to benefit from scholarships and financial aid!

Why did you choose engineering?

I enjoyed working on cars and solving problems with math and science. I wanted to dive deeper into how big problems are solved.

Expected graduation: June 2023

Nicole Setiawan

Nicole Setiawan

she/her

Hometown: Kent, WA     Major: Mechanical engineering

Entered UW as a Freshman

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

HuskyADAPT, The Robinson Center for Young Scholars

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Residence hall (dorms), Engineering Living Learning Community in Maple Hall, Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I chose to attend UW because it has a great engineering program, and also many other opportunities outside of engineering! It seemed like a great place to pursue engineering while also being able to explore my other interests.

Why did you choose engineering?

I chose engineering because I'm excited to design and create solutions to some of the problems we face today. It feels great to be able to make a positive impact in the world!

Expected graduation: June 2025

Rudy Toepfer

Rudy Toepfer

He/him

Hometown: Seattle, WA     Major: Materials science & engineering

Entered UW as a transfer

Schedule a meeting

 

What UW clubs or organizations are you involved in on campus?

Washington Yacht Club

What housing experiences have you had at the UW?

Off-campus housing

Why did you choose to attend UW?

I came to UW because of the incredible programs that are available at a large well regarded school. At UW you will learn from and work with leading professors who are passionate about their research. You’ll participate in programs that have connections to government and top companies, and collaborate with people from around the world.

Why did you choose engineering?

As an engineer, you’ll learn new ways to think in order to solve the toughest problems we face.

Expected graduation: June 2023