[h2-top]M.S. Software Engineering[/h2-top]
Why did you choose UC Irvine for your M.S. studies?
Most universities offer a M.S. in computer science, but I was looking for something less technical and geared toward software engineering and software architecture. A professor from Imperial College London recommended me to study with Richard Taylor at UC Irvine. I contacted Taylor and he told me that he was interested in having me as a student, so I applied and fortunately was accepted.
What has been your favorite class so far, and why?
I have liked many classes so far, but my favorites were software architecture and information retrieval. I enjoyed the former because it is the topic I want to specialize in, and the professor was a seasoned expert in the field; and the latter because it was mostly project-oriented and we had the freedom to implement requirements, as we preferred.
Have you done an internship?
Before coming to UC Irvine, I worked for eight years at a software development company in Argentina making software for the financial industry. I started as a software developer and, after four years, I was promoted to team leader.
Have you been involved in research? If so, what project, and in what role?
I am working with Taylor on the Computational State Transfer (COAST) research project. Because I was also working as a teaching assistant, my participation was limited to learning what had already been done and creating a proof-of-concept of a monitoring suite for applications developed using COAST. Beginning Fall 2014, I will be working on my thesis that will be related to COAST, so then I expect to be contributing more.
What has been the best part of your experience so far?
The best part of my experience has been learning about many different areas and technologies. I have taken courses that have exposed me to ubiquitous computing, information retrieval and machine learning, and also given me a deeper understanding of software engineering, software architecture and programming. Since I am an international student, living in a different country for two years and getting to know new people is an experience in itself. I recommend it to anyone interested.
What has been the most unexpected part of your experience?
I did not know that many courses would be research-oriented. For some reason, I thought that courses would be practical with assignments to implement what we learn in class. Fortunately, there are many courses of that nature, but students need to pay attention to which courses they choose.
What are your aspirations for the future?
Before coming to UC Irvine, I was unsure about what I wanted to do professionally because I liked software architecture, but also other things. Now, after being exposed to many fields, I know that I want to be a software architect. Once I finish my M.S., I will work in the industry, hopefully on challenging projects as an architect or in a team.
What is your advice to prospective M.S. students who may be interested in the program?
They should take time to research exactly what the program offers, what courses are available and also talk to current students. What I like about software engineering at UC Irvine is that the courses are very diverse and it is easy to take courses that are aligned with what you expect.