Outstanding Graduate, Fall 2019
Jake Mendiola has been interested in computer hardware for as long as he can remember. He has six custom-built computers and has designed numerous electronic systems to help his friends and family. His next move after graduating this fall will continue that passion.
Mendiola will continue his studies to earn a master’s degree in computer engineering as part of the 4+1 program at ASU.
Mendiola started at ASU as a New American University Scholarship recipient and has been on the dean’s list every semester. In addition to being named a Fulton Schools Outstanding Graduate, Mendiola also received the Moeur Award, which recognizes students who have maintained a 4.0 GPA every semester of their ASU career.
He advises other students to build their schedules around their interests, choosing the most challenging professors.
“My most rewarding experiences at ASU have been the classes that inspire a different way of thinking,” he says. “The topics are challenging to understand, but once I’m able to find a new way to view the problems, everything clicks. The moment that everything starts to make sense is one of the most rewarding feelings.”
One of those moments came when his team won a $1,000 award for their SafeLease idea, a platform that offers people a safe, easy way to sublet living space.
Mendiola has helped other students succeed as an undergraduate teaching assistant and as a tutor in the University Academic Success Program. Several students scheduled their tutoring center visits around his availability.
“I made a point of addressing students’ misconceptions and offering different ways of looking at problems,” he explains. “Students seemed to appreciate this approach.”
His summers have been busy with internships at Viasat and next summer he will intern at IBM.
“These internship experiences are extremely valuable,” Mendiola says. “They offer an opportunity to use what I’ve learned in the classroom in real-life applications.”
Mendiola plans to use those experiences to make a difference.
“Engineering has already changed the world,” he says. “I am excited to be a part of the next several decades of innovation.”