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Electrical Engineering and Computer Science

Undergraduate Spotlight: Hilary Barbour

Published on March 13th, 2012 by Michelle Ward

EECS senior Hilary Barbour is the president of the Center for Remote Sensing of Ice Sheets (CReSIS) student organization and a member of the Jayhawk Motorsports team, the KU Indoor Intramural Soccer Team, and KU Swim Club.

What is a typical day like?

A typical day for me this year is to wake up and eat breakfast (very important!) before heading off to class. If I have a short break between classes, I hang out in the EECS Computer Commons or the Senior Design Lab to work on homework or projects. If I have a long break, I usually go to work for a few houHilary Barbourrs. If there is not a Jayhawk Motorsports meeting, a huge project due, or a KU Basketball game, I try to go to the gym. If I have a pile of homework to do, I skip the gym and work on it at home. While this year is quite busy, a typical day in my previous years as an EECS student was a bit more relaxed.

 

What have been some highlights and challenges?

One great thing about KU is that it is a large university. There is always something to do, and you have the opportunity to meet many different kinds of people. EECS students have a building that was built with them in mind. Eaton Hall has 24-hour access to its computing facilities and some of the design labs. This becomes a blessing in your senior year. Time management is a challenge. I like to take the opportunities offered to me, but balancing school, work, clubs, and other extracurricular activities is tough at times.

 

What has been overall experience as an EECS student?

Electrical engineering isn’t the easiest of programs, but it is one of the most rewarding. I get more from my EECS classes than any others because they are challenging, yet engaging.

 

What have been some of your favorite times at KU?

I love going to KU basketball games. The atmosphere is so energized. You can’t help going crazy when a player lands an awesome dunk. I have also enjoyed Lawrence’s social scene. Going to Mass Street is always a good time, whether you’re eating out, shopping, or going out with friends.

 

What are your plans after graduation?

I hope to pursue a master’s degree in electrical engineering. I am open to attending a university in the U.S. or Europe. With my bachelor’s and, hopefully, master’s degrees, I plan to work overseas or for a company where I can travel.

 

What are your top tips for new students?

My advice for new students is to get involved in a club. I joined KU Swim Club my junior year, and I regret not doing it sooner. I met great people who love to swim. We traveled to competitions, which were always a blast. It’s always worthwhile to branch out of engineering to diversify yourself.

Another opportunity I highly recommend is study abroad. I studied language in Germany, and it changed my life. I met some great people, tried wonderful German cuisine, and saw many regions of Germany and a couple surrounding countries.