Twenty Fourteen

Posted January 10, 2014

I’ve gone through a lot during this past semester. It was definitely the toughest semester of my academic career and I hope that it stays that way. As difficult as it was, it also ended up being quite successful. Here are some academic highlights:

  • Created STHX, an arcade-style Windows 8 game for CSCE 443 (Game Development). The first game to be completed and submitted to an application distribution platform in the history of the entire course.
  • Created C.A.D.S., a directional sound detection system for CSCE 462 (Microcomputer Systems). I can’t confirm, but I was told that our team received the highest grade for our work.
  • Officially completed all requirements for a Math minor.

On top of the course work and working a part-time job, I felt concerned at the beginning of the semester. Since this is my final year in college, I knew that there was something important that I had to do: find a job. I’ve seen friends and other college students fail to find jobs after graduation and it gets to me as a result. Even though I’m majoring in something that’s high in job security, I still couldn’t help but fear that I wasn’t going to find anything. I knew that I wasn’t the best Computer Science student (seriously, this program is pretty darn competitive) and I also failed to find an internship this past summer (possibly for the best; needed to take care of some classes). Regardless, I stayed confident and believed in my abilities. For the past three months, I spoke to dozens of people and have been interviewed by many companies. By the time final exams came around I had multiple offers. If I was told at the beginning of the semester that this would happen, I wouldn’t have believed it. Even then so, it was still hard to believe.

I’ve received offers from big names for positions that weren’t too appealing. Sure, it’s nice to be paid well to have financial security, but money doesn’t make up for being miserable about what I’m doing. After a lot of thought and consideration, I decided that I wanted to work for IBM in Austin. The team that I’ll be working with is friendly and is focusing on an area that caters the most to my interests: mobile development. Words can’t express how thankful I am for the opportunity to work on what I enjoy the most while staying in the state of Texas. I’m extremely excited. I look forward to learning and contributing as much as I can.

I’ve been working on quite a few different things during this winter break. I’ve spent many sleepless nights rebuilding my website from the ground up, something I’ve never done before. It required extensive work in both PHP and JavaScript. A lot was done and I’m glad that it’s up and running in time for 2014. I also prepared for my move to Austin in May by signing a lease for a brand new apartment. Finally, my car broke down for good last month, so I’ll  be buying a brand new car for my birthday near the end of my final semester. It’s mind-blowing how quickly things are moving along. Everything in my life is finally falling into place and I couldn’t be happier.

But it’s not over yet. Everything can’t work out until one thing happens: graduation. I’m about to start my final semester of college. It’s only 12 hours, but it has the potential to be the most ambitious one yet. I’m ready and determined to follow through on any opportunities that this semester will grant me. I’ve had so many tough moments during my time in College Station, but coming to Texas A&M as a Computer Science major was undoubtedly the best decision that I have made in my entire life. I feel so proud and privileged to call myself an Aggie and I wouldn’t want it any other way.


  • Jimmy Ho

    That’s pretty inspiring man. I like computer science enough, but sometimes I wish I had as much passion for it as you do. And congrats on the job! One of my friends and grad school buddies at A&M has been working at IBM in Austin too, in the Emerging Technology group.

    • Thank you! Who’s to say you’re not passionate? My passion for programming wouldn’t have been possible without Amy Cuddy’s inspirational TED talk which was about “not faking it until you make it, but faking it until you BECOME it.” Over a year ago, I wasn’t confident with coding. All I cared about was getting assignments done and slipping by. In the beginning of 2013, I started to “fake” it by telling myself that I was interested in programming. I practiced a lot, giving up as much sleep as I could. By summer, I really started to like programming and what I was doing. By the end of the year, I could proudly say that I genuinely loved programming and felt confident without having to lie to myself or faking it. It’s addictive. I spend more time coding than playing video games now.

      If someone doesn’t feel confident in what they’re doing or planning to be doing, they should spend just about 20 minutes listening to Cuddy’s talk. It may make a huge difference.

Hello Ruiz. Theme designed and created by yours truly.

Made with Wordpress, Bootstrap, and lots of love.