Faces on Campus – Sirisha Epari
Sirisha Epari pursued her Bachelors in Information Technology from the National Institute of Science and Technology in Berhampur. She worked as a project engineer at Wipro Technologies for an Australia-based energy and utilities client. She then moved to Haplotech Solutions and worked as a product manager. Sirisha has also volunteered for fundraising events and is heavily involved in the planning and coordination of student activities at Northeastern University–Seattle, where she serves as the Student Ambassador for the Master of Science Information Systems program.
Hi Sirisha. Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I am from a city called Berhampur, which is located on the eastern coastline of the Ganjam district of the Indian state of Orissa. It’s also recognized as “Silk City,” after its famous saris. I have spent the majority of my life there, from childhood right up until I completed my undergrad. Once I started working, I moved to a few different cities to work on various projects. I arrived in Seattle in December 2014 and decided that I wanted to build upon my current education. I chose to pursue a master’s degree in the United States, so I applied to NU-Seattle. I am trained in an Indian classical dance form called Bharatanatyam. I love dancing, painting and trying different cuisines!
What influenced your decision to choose the Information Systems program at NU-Seattle?
The course focuses on technologies that are in demand in the corporate world. My program emphasizes strong technical and business skills that aim to build better software systems to meet business requirements. This innovative blend of academic and corporate experience helps boost job opportunities for our students. The Information Systems program opens a wide spectrum of different job opportunities in a variety of fields, including software development, engineering, web development, program management, business analysis and many more.
What influenced your decision to study at the Seattle campus?
I like the culture, vibe and diversity in Seattle. It’s one of the fastest growing cities in the U.S., and is home for major companies like Amazon, Microsoft, Nordstrom, Starbucks, Tableau and Zulily. The Seattle campus is not like other conventional universities, because it’s downtown and surrounded by globally renowned companies like Amazon, Google and Facebook. This is really motivational, and it feels great to see firsthand where you will most likely land in future and how your day-to-day life will be.
You are currently one of our MSIS Student Ambassadors. What impact do you hope to have in this role?
My goal is to share my experiences with the incoming students so they will be aware of what to expect and prepare themselves for any potential challenges ahead of time. I handle queries related to courses, the campus and job opportunities, to name a few. Sometimes it is easier to ask another student the more simple questions. I want to answer every question they may have, be it “silly” or important. Overall, I am striving to make the transition to life at NU-Seattle smooth for new students. I want the new students to be aware of the profound resources available, yet also feel comfortable. I am also working to bring the MSIS students and alumni together more. So far, I have been utilizing social networking sites to achieve a more cohesive sense of community. I have created a Facebook group called Northeastern Seattle MSIS group, where the MSIS students can meet with other current students and alumni to assuage any doubts they may have.
What is the one thing you have learned during your time at Northeastern University–Seattle which has most affected your life?
I really like the method of teaching here. It is more interactive and engaging; the faculty and staff definitely encourage the students to get more involved. I receive a lot of hands-on experience on the topics while I am studying. The best part is building projects from scratch and making them work. This teaching style makes a huge difference in understanding the topics and concepts clearly. Once the concepts are clear, it is pretty easy to work on the project from there. Also, I have met so many new people. I started hanging out with other students during weekends, we worked on various projects together and have built friendships. These are the main things I will be taking with me from NU-Seattle.
What do you hope to achieve after you graduate?
Of course I hope to land my dream job. However, I also want to keep up to speed with technologies as they evolve, while also working on projects that will have a huge impact on a large scale. After graduation, I definitely want to get involved in alumni activities. I want to promote my program and I want my colleagues to come to the campus and share their knowledge with the new students, which will give them some insight into what the corporate needs are. I think bringing in more guest lecturers will be hugely beneficial to the students here. I want to stay connected to my roots, because I have had so much opportunity her at Northeastern Seattle. I definitely want to give something back.