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Student Profile

Jessica Thompson – Troy, Ill.

Although she grew up just miles outside of Edwardsville, Jessica Thompson was not accustomed to the life she has found at SIUE.

Before enrolling at SIUE, Jessica, a senior industrial engineering major from Troy, Ill., had the impression that the University was a small, public school. What she did not realize was how large and diverse the campus is and how integrated the University is in the town of Edwardsville.

“I have been able to discover the University and town I have lived next to my whole life,” Jessica said. “It has been a completely new experience.”

The experience of working closely with classmates in the School of Engineering is one that Jessica values and enjoys on a daily basis. Diversity in the classroom is nothing short of vast. On any given project, Jessica may be partnered with a wide-range of individuals, from students who are in the National Guard and full-time tennis players to people from all different kinds of cultural backgrounds, including Turkish students. “It is really cool for all of us to come together and succeed on a project.”

The projects offered by the School are very hands-on, thus teaching Jessica a great deal about the engineering industry. She has manufactured a chess piece and programmed a Frogger video game. She has also had the opportunity to work on quality control projects and manufacturing algorithms, which could be implemented in the industry today.

These experiences offered by SIUE’s School of Engineering prepare students for life outside of college. Partnerships with companies such as Monsanto, The Boeing Company and Canon open doors for students like Jessica, who has had opportunities outside of the University.

Last summer, Jessica worked with Scott Air Force Base on financial programs for their services division. She also has an internship lined up for next summer with Monsanto, a leader in sustainable agricultural production. Jessica's position will focus on quality control and continuous processes improvement.

“The School of Engineering has prepared me for the internship I will be doing over the summer,” Jessica said. “This internship will, in turn, equip me with knowledge and confidence to move forward with my career.”

As far as future plans, Jessica is willing to travel wherever the industrial engineering field may take her, perhaps all over the country. “SIUE has excelled in preparing me for the future. I trust I will follow a diverse path in which SIUE has helped me create.”

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