Mines Staff

Madison Berry: "One of the things I most enjoy at Mines is the large focus on preparing you for the workforce."

The Netherlands
Mechanical Engineering Student
Madison Berry

Why did you choose to come to Mines? What have you enjoyed most about being here?

Mines first appealed to me because it seemed like there was a large focus on the practicality of education. It was definitely not a misplaced notion. One of the things I most enjoy at Mines is the large focus on preparing you for the workforce. I also really enjoy the wide range of extracurricular activities you can get involved in at Mines. There is always something going on and a million ways to stay involved and keep busy.

Tell us about something you're working on right now that you find exciting, fulfilling or challenging?

Right now, I am involved with Mines Without Borders, which is a student branch of Engineers Without Borders. I am currently one of the project leads for the Los Gomez water project in Nicaragua. We are working on designing a water distribution system which we are planning to implement this summer. The project is a great application of a lot of the theoretical concepts I learn in my classes. It has also given me the chance to be involved in a more professional engineering project. A lot of the work is technically challenging but extremely fulfilling.

Have you done an internship or co-op or been in a professional job while at Mines? Tell us who you worked for and what you were doing. What stands out?

While I have not done an internship with industry, I did spend the summer of 2018 working for the NGO Village Schools Tanzania. I worked at their technical college and did a variety of jobs. I helped write curriculum for their physics program, taught AutoCAD and designed a UV water purification system and then taught the students how to build it. I have also been volunteering for an NGO in Nepal since high school. I’ve been involved with documenting their water distribution project in 10 different rural villages. Most recently, another Mines student and I also conducted a social survey about microfinance for the organization this summer in 2019.

What communities, groups or organizations—on- and off-campus—are important to you and why?

On campus, I find Mines Without Borders and the Humanitarian Engineering Department to be an important part of my life. I really connect with the mission of these institutions and find the work very relevant to my career path. The many ways I’ve been involved with them have shaped my perception of the world. I also love being a part of the Harvey Scholars program. I have met so many friends through the program and love being around other like-minded scholars. Everybody in the program has a great drive to change the world, and I always end up having the best conversations with my peers. Finally, I also think the International Office is a great group on campus. I studied abroad in Singapore last academic year and love hanging around the office and chatting with everyone there.

What are your plans for the future? What's your dream job?

In the future, I hope to end up working in Nepal for a while. I have some great friends there, and I really love the country. Nepal has so much potential, and I want to be there to see how the country and its people grow. I hope to be able to work in the international development field. I really want my profession as an engineer to mean something and have a direct impact on people. I also love traveling and experiencing new cultures. I never want to live in just one place.

What would you tell someone interested in joining your academic program or Mines in general?

At Mines, you will also get an education that will help prepare you for your future job. It’s not too hard to find professors here at Mines that really care about preparing you for the future. Mines is also the place to come if you like to work hard and be around like-minded peers. It’s the perfect place for you if you like being involved and have a strong drive to make an impact. Just don’t come here for the food!

What's your favorite thing to do outside of class and coursework? How do you unwind, manage stress, find fulfillment, etc.?

I have a lot of creative hobbies such as drawing and knitting. There isn’t too much time for them in between course work, but I fit them in whenever I get the chance. I unwind oftentimes by hanging out with my friends or going to the many fun events around campus.

Tell us something about you that most people would be surprised to learn?

I can speak fluent Pig Latin.


Mines Staff

About Mines
Colorado School of Mines is a public research university focused on science and engineering, where students and faculty together address the great challenges society faces today - particularly those related to the Earth, energy and the environment.