Transferring into Computing Science

Hear what our WiCS members have to say, and what inspired them to persue Computing Science here at Simon Fraser University!

Nargis Ghiasi

Hello, my name is Nargis! I am a third-year computer science and business student at SFU. I had initially enrolled at SFU for Chemistry, unsure of what career I wanted to pursue. I had been intrigued by what the tech industry was about and yet at the same time, intimidated due to my lack of knowledge and the large gender gap. I took my first computer science course as an elective and became aware this field was filled with never-ending opportunities. This continues to excite me because I know there will be challenges but personal rewards in learning more. I’m happy I transferred to computer science especially at SFU because of the strong curriculum and inclusive student clubs or unions just like WiCS! I encourage others who are curious, to reach out and ask for more information.

Dawn Chandler

Dawn (they/them) is a backend software engineer at SkipTheDishes (remote) and recovering serial intern. While they were doing their undergrad at SFU, they did 5 internships: frontend at Environment Canada (Vancouver), frontend at Thomson Reuters (Toronto), Extreme Blue at IBM (Toronto), iOS at Collective Health (San Francisco), and infrastructure at Microsoft (Seattle). Dawn graduated from SFU in 2020 with a joint major in Computer Science and Linguistics. At SFU, they were, at different times, the President and Technical Coordinator of WiCS, the Director of Archives of the CSSS, and the Woman of the Year for the Faculty of Applied Sciences.

When I was in my last year of highschool and applying to universities, I thought I was going to study English Literature. But I ended up coming to SFU and studying Communications. Partway through my first semester, I realized that Communications wasn't for me. At that point, I was ready to set out on discovering "my passion", which I thought would involve a couple years of taking courses from different programs at SFU and seeing what set me alight. Instead, I wound up taking what was basically a Computing Science major's course load for my second semester (CMPT 120, MACM 101, MATH 150). I knew I had found a major that would challenge me (Perhaps too much!), and provide me with a more obvious career path. I'm grateful that I studied Computing Science, because it's led me to a career (software engineering) with a wealth of opportunities and given me a foundational skill set (coding) that I can use to solve real world problems.