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Ahsan Waseem
Ahsan Waseem, a senior in the Department of Multidisciplinary Engineering, has been successful by creating his own degree plan based on his interests and future career goals. | Image: Texas A&M Engineering
When he arrived on Texas A&M University’s campus, Ahsan Waseem knew he wanted to get the best value out of his four-year degree. He was quickly drawn to the Department of Multidisciplinary Engineering because it gave him the flexibility to design a degree around his interests and goals.
Waseem is a senior in the department and will graduate in May. He is minoring in computer science and already has a job lined up with Microsoft Corporation, where he will be a product manager. By tailoring his degree, he has pursued his passions while also getting a diverse education.
“Multidisciplinary engineering made the most sense for me,” Waseem said. “It allowed me to expand my knowledge in areas that interested me without forcing me to get too specific in one discipline.”
When Waseem started his education as a freshman, he had the goal of increasing his value as a future employee by expanding his breadth of knowledge in a diverse set of disciplines. Having this diverse set of skills will allow Waseem to go many different directions after he graduates.
“I believe in following the Pareto Principle,” Waseem said. “I can learn 80% of the required functional knowledge of a discipline by taking 20% of the classes. The multidisciplinary engineering degree allowed me to really expand the breadth of my knowledge because I could take important classes from a diverse set of majors.”
While the department provided Waseem with the ability to tailor his degree plan, it also provided him with a personalized experience that allowed him to be successful.
“The department is relatively small compared to other departments,” Waseem said. “This is one of the department’s greatest strengths. Because of the size, students get to spend one-on-one time with academic advisors, staff and faculty.”
Looking into the future, Waseem hopes to pursue his three passions: music, mountains and technology.
“In high school, I interned at a music studio where I learned how to be creative and develop something new from scratch,” he said. “Today, I apply that creativity to writing code and creating websites.”
With his passion for mountain climbing, Waseem summited Mount Baker this past summer and plans to climb Mount Rainier this upcoming summer. He also has goals of conquering both Mount Everest and Mount Denali.
“It’s hard to explain why I want to climb a mountain,” Waseem said. “To quote the famous mountaineer, George Mallory, ‘Because it’s there.’”
When he’s not climbing mountains, Waseem plans to use the skills he learned in the multidisciplinary engineering department to give back to society through volunteerism and by creating technologies that will improve human existence.
“I think some people have a moral responsibility to create products to improve the world,” he said. “I find myself in that group and consider it my responsibility to create new technologies that will provide value to people. I hope to do this by starting my own tech company or renewable energy company.”
The multidisciplinary engineering department has provided Waseem with fundamental knowledge in a diverse subset of disciplines that will enable him to make that difference. Waseem credits the department for setting him up for success.
“I’m extremely thankful that I chose the multidisciplinary engineering department,” he said. “The department truly cares about its students and does an outstanding job of preparing us for our future. Whether I’m working for Microsoft or scaling a mountain, the skills I learned in the department will last a lifetime.”