Outstanding Graduate, Fall 2019
Armed with a prestigious National Merit Scholarship, Monica Welfert had options available to her when choosing where to go to college.
She was looking for a top research university that offered a wide variety of academic and social opportunities. But staying close to home in Tempe was not necessarily one of the criteria.
However, with ASU being ranked by U.S. News and World Report as No. 1 in innovation among the nation’s universities, Welfert says the choice was an easy one.
Not quite as easy was deciding on a major. Welfert, however, was certain she wanted a career in “a dynamic and impactful industry” that helps seek solutions to many of society’s critical challenges.
Being inclined toward science and engineering subjects, she soon saw how computers and technology “affect every aspect of our lives, including health, commerce, education and transportation,” and that computer systems engineering would give her expertise in both computing hardware and software. “I felt it was the right choice,” she says.
Welfert’s academic performance throughout her undergraduate years confirms her choice. As an engineering student in ASU’s Barrett, the Honors College, she made the dean’s list every semester.
Outside the classroom, Welfert participated in the Fulton Schools Engineering Projects in Community Service Program, known as EPICS, to develop a musical tool to help children with autism.
She found the project provided a valuable lesson in the process of being able to think of a possible solution to a real-world problem.
Welfert also found constructive guidance from Fulton Schools Principal Lecturer Mutsumi Nakamura, who taught several courses Welfert took and gave her the opportunity to work as an undergraduate teaching assistant.
“She is an exceptional teacher who truly cares about her students’ success,” Welfert says of Nakamura. “I credit her with helping me build confidence not only in my choice of a major but also in myself.”
After graduation, Welfert will continue studies in computer engineering through the Fulton Schools 4+1 accelerated master’s degree program.