Upsilon Pi Epsilon at Illinois Tech (UPE-IIT) welcomed its members back for the start of the fall 2018 semester on September 5, 2018. Phil Hossu, President of UPE-IIT, presented new executive board members, including Vice President Mahmoud Kahack, Treasurer Saikiran Yerraguntla, and Secretary Anna Benson.
Hossu mentioned the main events that the society is working on hosting, which are mainly company collaborations, social events, research seminars, and a hack night. The objective of the executive board is to promote UPE-IIT events, receive feedback from faculty members and students, and reach out to Chicago-based companies. Members were allowed to vote on which events they would appreciate most during the fall semester. Following which, Hossu updated the members about an upcoming opportunity for visiting the Ocient (a growing tech company) office to meet engineers in the tech industry.
Dr. Ioan Raicu, Associate Professor in Computer Science at Illinois Tech, shared the importance for students to show enthusiasm through extra curricular activities. Professor Raicu explained: “You all have good grades here, you will definitely get a job. But, what will differentiate you with others? What will get you the bonus?” He believes that extracurricular activities will definitely set a student apart. That include a few simple activities like the Student Cluster Competition (SCC) http://www.studentclustercompetition.us/, the International Collegiate Programming Contest (ICPC) https://icpc.baylor.edu/, CyberForce Competition, Hackathons/Open source software, and research with a faculty member (independent study: CS497/CS597), and Reseach Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs nationwide https://www.nsf.gov/crssprgm/reu/list_result.jsp?unitid=5049.
Third year PhD student Alexandru Iulian Orhean also stressed on working with Linux environments and how, as a teaching assistant, he has encouraged his students to use Linux as their operating systems. Dr. Raicu also added how a student will be at an advantage during a technical coding job interview. If one is not able to debug code, they can simply use a bunch of different compilers available in a Linux environment to get a better understanding of the coding problem. As a chapter of the computer science honors society, UPE also announced its two scholarship recipients for the 2018 - 2019 financial aid year: Jithin Joyson and Qitian Zheng. Both were awarded with a total of $2000 towards their studies. If you have any questions about this organization, you can reach out to them at [email protected].