[h2-top]M.S. Software Engineering[/h2-top]
Why did you choose UC Irvine for your M.S. studies?
I chose UC Irvine because it is a very short distance from work and would allow me to take classes and work full-time simultaneously.
What has been your favorite class so far, and why?
My favorite class so far has been Software Architecture because it really opened my eyes to what goes into the continual planning and organization of software development. Prior to taking this class, I had only been focused on individual modules of software and their unit tests, not on the software system as a whole and how it integrates together. Now, having taken Software Architecture, all of my decisions at work have been focused on making sure the entire software system functions as intended.
Have you had an internship or full-time job?
I started as an intern for Irvine Sensors Corporation in the summer of 2012, one semester before I graduated from UC Merced with my B.S. in computer science and engineering. After graduating in December 2012, I was hired full-time as a software engineer. Midway through 2013, the senior developer I was working with left the company for another job, and I was suddenly thrust into the position of lead developer with three interns working under me. Shortly afterward, I started my M.S. studies at UC Irvine. At the beginning of 2014, I was promoted to the position of software design team lead, giving me official authority over the two remaining interns (who have since been hired full-time) and the two new interns we hired for summer 2014. My role consists of leading the software development team and helping them with any development issues they may encounter, along with interfacing with the management team about which issues to tackle and which features to focus on.
Have you been involved in research?
I have not been involved in any research.
What has been the best part of your experience so far?
The best part has been learning from the past experiences of my classmates. Had I not enrolled in this program, I would never have learned about Agile programming or JIRA, even though Agile and JIRA were never covered as topics in the classes I’ve taken so far. I have since implemented a JIRA server with the JIRA Agile plugin at work and have pushed my employees to start using it. My managers have expressed positive feedback about it and are encouraging me to keep using it and keep the rest of the team on track with it.
What has been the most unexpected part of your experience?
Realizing how much of the knowledge I had gained about software engineering was due to very recent developments and discoveries and how much was due to relatively old developments. For example, I had learned about software companies adopting 6-week release cycles in the past 5 years, but I didn’t realize that the ideas that led to this originated in the early to mid-’90s.
What are your aspirations for the future?
I hope to become a senior developer for a major video game company such as Blizzard Entertainment.
What is your advice to prospective M.S. students who may be interested in the program?
I would advise prospective M.S. students to take their education seriously. Connect with and network with your fellow students, don’t just show up for classes then go home. That’s what I did at first, but then I realized that my time here would be much more beneficial if I connected with my classmates.[/two_third][one_fourth_last]