Senior computer engineering major Xiaohui Guo came to MSOE from Taiyuan, China. The practical, hands-on learning experiences are what drew her to the university. Her time at MSOE as an international student has helped her harness her skills and grow as an individual.

Over the summer before the start of her senior year, Guo had the opportunity to intern at 3D Molecular Designs, just down the road from MSOE. The company creates 3D printed models and kits of molecular structures that can be used as aids in teaching core concepts of biology, chemistry, physical and life sciences.

“As I designed and completed projects, my experiences enabled me to apply classroom learning to real-world work,” said Guo. “Especially in areas like voltage variations, LCD connections, control system coding and PCB board design. I sensed the tangible application of course work content, which boosted my confidence in accomplishing project tasks. My understanding of fields like computer engineering grew more profound.”

With the help of her mentors and the interns she worked alongside, Guo was able to expand her knowledge and gain valuable experience that will help her as she enters the work force. After graduation, she hopes to work in a role in mathematics or engineering that would also allow her the flexibility to pursue her own creative projects.

The Office of Multicultural Affairs has played a crucial role of support for Guo, not only in helping her as she started her internship, but also throughout her entire academic career at MSOE.

“In an unfamiliar work environment collaborating with colleagues from diverse backgrounds, I initially felt a bit uneasy and hesitant. However, the Office's support and encouragement gradually helped me overcome these challenges.”

Adjusting to a new country and enrolling in college both come with their own set of unique experiences. As someone who encountered them simultaneously, Guo has advice to share to future and current MSOE international students.

“When arriving in a new country, it's natural to encounter cultural differences and face adaptation challenges. However, don't hesitate to proactively reach out to international advisors. They will provide valuable support and assistance to help you better assimilate into the new environment, address any issues and establish friendships with your fellow students.”

In her free time, Guo is a passionate skateboarder and loves to build with LEGO’s. Both hobbies help her exercise, unwind and express her creativity.