Shinwoo Kim: A Self Interview

A picture of Shinwoo Kim, wearing a t-shirt with the Pitt script logo.

Shinwoo Kim is the Honors College S.T.E.A.M ambassador for the fall 2021 semester, working in the Hill District CEC.

Tell us about yourself.

My name is Shinwoo Kim, and I am the Honors College S.T.E.A.M. Ambassador for Pitt’s Community Engagement Center(CEC) in the Hill District for the fall 2021 semester. I am a freshman computer science student(mathematics minor/sustainability certificate), enrolled in the School of Computing and Information and the Honors College. Outside my position at the CEC, I work with the Pitt Office of Admissions and Financial Aid’s D.R.E.A.M. (Diversity Recruitment Education and Mentoring) program as a mentor and support the Pittsburgh Admissions Collaboration program. Before coming to Pittsburgh, I worked as a President of my high school’s tutoring program, a Educator at the Elmwood Park Zoo in Norristown, and as a Camp Counselor at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia.

Tell us a bit more about your position.

As part of the Hill District CEC team, I will be helping to develop new STEM-based community programs, as well as working to facilitate existing programs like: STEAM Saturdays, Girls Who Code, Scales to Tales, Video Game Design, and more. I am also working to develop the curriculum and teach the Bridges to IT(CompTIA A+ certification course).

How did you find out about this position, and what made you decide to join the CEC?

I first heard about this internship through the Honor’s College’s housing manager, Parker Werns. He’d sent out a newsletter which discussed this internship in late September, and as soon as I read the position description, I knew it was the perfect position for me. Starting in late summer, I’d been working with the CEC in developing a program to teach high school seniors about Technology(CompTIA A+ certification course), and knew what the CEC was all about. From a young age, I’ve always cared about giving back to my local community—not necessarily monetarily but often through volunteering. The Honors College STEAM Ambassador program was a perfect opportunity for me to merge my passion for STEM(especially computer science) and love for volunteering.

What are your professional goals?

In the short term, I hope to graduate Pitt with a bachelor and master’s degree in Computer Science through the SCI’s BS+MS program, all the while attaining an Honors joint-degree, a minor in Mathematics and a certificate in sustainability. After I graduate, I hope to work at one of the top technology companies(Facebook, Google, Apple, etc.), all the while continuing to make change in my community at the local level. Beyond that, my future is still an open-book. I have plans for pursuing further education and perhaps finding a place in academia.

What do you hope to gain out of this Internship?

Through this internship, I hope to be able to better understand the relationship between the university and the local community. Throughout my time here as STEAM ambassador, I hope to make positive changes, fighting injustice, while also making connections with people from diverse backgrounds. Working in this position will give me a better understanding  of the larger Pittsburgh community, its various dynamics, history and rich culture. And most importantly, I hope to be able to carry the practical skills like logistics and communication into the workforce after I graduate.

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