Why do I want to go to Carnegie Mellon? [ARCHIVE]

by Isaac Sanders

When I first considered the question of why I wanted to go to CMU, I could not articulate my answer. There are reasons Ohio State would be a good choice, for example I could go there cheaply, and I could graduate sooner. University of Michigan offers advantages. It is a big school with a decent CS program, and there are networking opportunities. But I couldn’t describe this wonderful feeling inside me when I thought of going to CMU.

It could be that I want to go to CMU because I have heard exciting things from a friend who is a student. He is always talking about some cool event that is happening at CMU. He works with a group of other extremely intelligent CMU students to start a business. The things that he does are interesting, but these aren’t the only reasons I am applying.

Carnegie-Mellon has the best faculty for computer science in the country. I don’t know of any other school that can boast the same quality of professors. I am attracted to the fact that the school provides its students with opportunities for learning outside of the classroom by joining with various technological “giants” such as Google, Apple, and Microsoft. For me, these are not the most compelling reasons.

Regardless of what I had heard, I wouldn’t know that CMU would be right for me till I visited. This past summer, my mother and I visited Pittsburgh to learn more about Carnegie Mellon and get a feeling for the campus. Over the course of the visit, I got a chance to walk through campus and learn my way around. I felt whole at Carnegie. It gave me a feeling that no other school had given me. It gave me the feeling of a place I could call home.

I think the reason that Carnegie-Mellon is the school that I want to go to more than any other university is the community. During my visit to CMU I walked through the Gates Center with my friend. He showed me all of the interesting things about the building and told me about the classes that he had taken there. But the most striking thing about the center was how much space was dedicated to collaboration. I was fascinated that there were whole rooms for students to work together. I was excited that CMU was a school that not only approved of collaboration, but was openly facilitating it. I hadn’t seen that at other schools I visited. Other schools were proud to be more competitive, and Carnegie-Mellon was proud to be more collaborative. That matters to me because I love to work with other people.

During my visit to Carnegie Mellon, I could sense the powerful collaborative spirit that the students share, and it excited me. It excited me to think of the opportunity to work with other students who share my passion for computers and helping others. It excited me to think of learning from and working with professors who developed the relevant technologies that they are teaching the students about.

I am always looking for the next challenge and the fast pace and intense curriculum of the SCS is the type of environment where I would thrive. I would have a chance to work with students who are better at certain things than I am, and I would be able to teach them things that I know. I know that there is an abundance of skilled students in CS, and not only for programming. Personally, I have the goal of starting my own company. Being around a group of intelligent, like-minded people means that possible business partners are next door. I want to go into computer science because I love computers. However, I know that computer science suffers without the art of human interaction. I want to fuse the two and change the world. Carnegie-Mellon’s School of Computer Science can help me do just that.

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