Sydney Truscott

Sydney Truscott
Computer and Information Technology (CIT)

What made you decide to choose your specific major?

Growing up, I was convinced that I wanted to be a chemical engineer like my parents. After taking two years of chemistry in high school, I quickly learned that I wanted nothing to do with it. I went on an engineering tour at another school and was handed a booklet with all of the majors in the College of Engineering. I was flipping through the papers when the word “Computer” on three of the pamphlets stood out to me. I’ve grown up using computers and always spent a ton of time on them due to my interests and commitments. I figured why not become a part of the reason why computers can work? My dad had reached out to the CIO of his company, asking which of the three Computer majors was the best in her opinion. Her answer was Computer Information Technology. She believed it was the most rounded major as it covers many aspects of the technology world. I took her word for it and chose Computer Information Technology as my major.  

What are a couple of your favorite things about your program of study?

I enjoy hands-on learning from all of the classes. Most classes have a lab to go along with lecture where you apply what you have learned. If there’s no lab, then there are usually multiple projects or a semester-long project. Some concepts in class are hard to understand when just talked about, but when I get a chance to work on the concept in a lab or a project, it starts to make sense. You meet a lot of great people in my major as well, whether it’s classmates, TAs, faculty, or upper support systems. 

What has been one of your favorite class projects?

One of my jobs as a Student Worker for ECN was to deploy many machines. The process was simple once you got into the habit of completing the task, but the machine would complete most of the deployment on its own. In CNIT 242, I was able to use my knowledge and skills of deployments to help me start the very first lab of the class. Basically, you start with three machines from scratch, and you have to go through the deployment and set everything up yourself. I was able to see everything that happens in a deployment step by step instead of it happening automatically. I loved being able to apply something I knew out of habit and seeing what happened behind the scenes. 

What other activities are you involved in on campus?

Women in Technology (WiT), CHAARG, Rising Professionals, Photographer for Men’s and Women’s Club Soccer and Purdue Hockey, InnovateHer Hackathon, Student Worker for Purdue Engineering Computer Network (ECN)

What do you know about your program of study now that you wish someone had told you when you were choosing a major?

When you are starting out, try and reach out or befriend upperclassmen. Many people have to take the same classes, whether you’re regular CIT or a concentration of it, like Cybersecurity. When you do this, you can gain insight on how classes go and what you should do to prepare yourself to perform your best. They can also give you advice throughout the semester or even give you a hand if you’re stuck on something. This also gives you connections that can last all your years while you’re at Purdue and beyond!             

What would be one piece of advice for prospective students or new Purdue students?

Get involved with whatever interests you whether it’s related to your major or not. Even though I have met so many people through my organizations related to the Polytechnic Institute, I have enjoyed making very good friends in other majors. It is so cool to get to know people outside of my major because I find it really interesting to learn about their classes or what they want to do after college.  

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