Our Graduating QUEST Students
As the semester winds down, we would like to congratulate the five QUEST seniors graduating this month, Matthew Ambrogi (Q27), Akshay Guthal (Q27), Yufei Huang (Q28), Meena Sengottuvelu (Q28), and Caitlin Thompson (Q28). I had the opportunity to catch up with a few of them before they walk across the stage, taking a pause to reflect on their time in QUEST.
Although he’s graduating this month, you’ll still be able to see Akshay around campus for a while longer as he pursues his Master’s degree in Computer Science. He plans on staying involved with QUESTDev as he and his co-lead, Dan Selzer (Q27), are organizing a hackathon for next semester.
The best trip Akshay’s ever taken was QUEST to Japan. “Being able to explore a foreign country where the culture is so different is such a cool experience,” he said. His favorite memory from the trip was when “a bunch of other students and I were at a marketplace and we were trying as many foreign foods as we could. The craziest one we ended up finding was duck head, and it honestly didn’t end up tasting that bad!”
Akshay also had the opportunity to go on the Silicon Valley trip. “It was super fun because the company visits were all very different. Tesla’s was the coolest because we got to do a full factory tour and see how the cars were being manufactured.”
“I love hanging out in the QUEST Lab and just talking to people who walk in and out about what is going on in their lives, and it’s amazing to see how driven and passionate everyone is about what they’re doing,” Akshay said while reflecting on what he will miss about QUEST. “I’m not sure if I’ll ever be surrounded by people as talented and humble as the people in QUEST.”
After traveling to Boston and China for a few weeks, Yufei will settle in California to be a Software Engineer for the Mac PowerPoint team at Microsoft. Attending the QUEST to Silicon Valley trip during her sophomore year contributed to her decision to work there after graduation. The summer following the trip, she interned for Microsoft as an Explorer Intern. She returned to Microsoft last summer to intern with the Software Engineering team, which she will be working with full time this March.
Yufei enjoyed working with BD in her team’s capstone project for 490H and was excited to share their work to the QUEST community at the end of this semester. “My favorite memories would definitely be presenting our hard work and achievements to our cohort,” she said.
She will miss her cohort and the memories they share, but Yufei will also miss the QUEST community as a whole. “I will probably miss QUEST as an environment that is so open to innovation. I feel like none of the real companies will be able to re-assemble this environment.”
After spending this past summer as a Risk and Compliance Consulting Intern, Caitlin is excited to be joining Protiviti full time as a Consultant after graduation. An Economics major and Statistics minor, Caitlin was involved with QUESTPress during her junior year.
Caitlin’s favorite experience in QUEST was going on the QUEST to Silicon Valley trip in Spring 2017. “I was able to meet students from other cohorts and see how the tools we learn in QUEST are applied to real-world situations at companies in Silicon Valley,” she said. “While we went on site visits to a variety of companies, were also given time to explore San Francisco and meet QUEST alumni in the area.”
Caitlin will miss seeing the friends she has made in QUEST on a daily basis, particularly within Cohort 28. “Being able to work on teams with students in a variety of majors have made me think of the world in a different way, which I do not think I would have learned without QUEST.”
In the future, Caitlin is looking forward to staying involved with QUEST. “I am excited to become part of the QUEST alumni network and stay involved however I can.”