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Solid Skills ASHLEY VASSELL 14 Ashley Vassell 14 visited Rensselaer in her junior year of high school and fell in love with the campus. She entered with the intention of going into engineering but down the line switched over to ITWS. I was interested in computers but especially interested in working with people said Vassell. I wanted to be able to take on a project managing role. In fact Vassell groomed her people skills by being an active member of groups like the Society of Women Engineers for which she served as president. She has also held two excellent internships one summer working at SP Capital IQ in New York City as a software engineer and more recently holding a summer internship at GE as an Information Technology Leadership Program Intern. My Rensselaer experiences really helped me in those jobs said Vassell. A lot of the classes at Rensselaer are group- or team-based and they help you develop communication skills and the ability to work with different kinds of people. You become much more adaptable which is very good if youre the newbie in the workplace. A lot of the classes at Rensselaer are group- or team- based and they help you develop communication skills and the ability to work with different kinds of people. RENSSELAER HACKATHON 2014 saw the debut of HackRPI a 24-hour event that gathered together some 500 students from the Northeast to engage in collaborative computer programming. Sponsored by companies like Microsoft and IBM HackRPI attracted people from McGill Yale MIT Cornell and other top institutions. Rensselaer student Daniel Baek did not sleep at all. I wanted it to work so bad I stayed up. And now it works said the computer systems engineering major about a project that makes LED lights connected to his laptop blink at certain times. This can then be applied to vintage arcade games and even used for light shows on speaker systems. Its a culture said Sebastian Sarbora a Rensselaer computer science major who was a co-founder and organizer of HackRPI. You go to these and you feel understood. Youre with people with similar interests. In a classroom youre working on the same assignment as everyone else. With this you build something or learn to build something from scratch. The hope is that HackRPI will become a yearly event that will grow and grow. school of science 41