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Mia Sheppard – study abroad, internships, and community service

Mia Sheppard profile
Mia Sheppard
Mia has served as co-coordinator of the Strong Sister Silly Sister Program
Mia has served as co-coordinator of the Strong Sister Silly Sister Program
Lyles School of Civil Engineering undergraduate student Mia Sheppard says she wants to use her education to help shape the world. "I chose civil engineering because I wanted to make an impact and really make a difference when I graduate," she said. "I know Purdue Civil Engineering will give me the education, skills, and connections necessary to succeed."

Hometown: South Bend, IN

Current year: Third

Why I chose Civil Engineering

I chose civil engineering because I wanted to make an impact and really make a difference when I graduate. I know Purdue Civil Engineering will give me the education, skills, and connections necessary to succeed.

The great thing about my school is that is allows for so many opportunities to get involved in organizations that interest you. While the coursework is rigorous, the faculty and other students really help you out so you never feel overwhelmed. You can’t help but feel like you’re part of one, big family.

Emphasis area

My specialization is in structural engineering — a specialization shared by Purdue Civil Engineering alumni and faculty who have been instrumental in the creation, expansion, and restoration of many of the world’s most famous landmarks such as the Golden Gate Bridge, Panama Canal, and the Leaning Tower of Pisa.

The professors here are some of the most knowledgeable people in their fields. They not only do well to educate you, but they have decades of research and professional experience to share.

Out-of-classroom education and involvement

Through Purdue University, I have already taken part in multiple internship and study abroad opportunities. These opportunities have taken her to study in Spain as well as assisting in the completion of the $375 million Sanford Fargo Medical Center in Fargo, North Dakota.

I am also heavily involved in university and community service organizations. I currently serve as second vice president for Purdue’s National Society of Black Engineers and is an ambassador for the College of Engineering. Additionally, I am a co-coordinator for the Strong Sister Silly Sister program, which aims to motivate first-year collegiate women of color to succeed at Purdue and offers mentorship to underclassmen.

After I graduate

I want to spend the next few years working as a structural engineer in a big city. Then, I’d like to pursue my MBA and transition more to the managerial side of things where my past experience and engineering education at Purdue will really help me and set me apart.


Mia in Barcelona, Spain