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Computer Science

Student Voices

  • Bailey Wellen '21

Bailey Wellen ’21


Wheaton, Illinois


Computer Science


Spanish and Mathematics

Favorite spot on campus

“The upstairs of the Campbell Student Union is always a quiet place to study, read, or catch up with a friend!”

Career goal

“I would like to get a job in data science, and after a couple years of industry experience, I hope to pursue a master’s degree. I am passionate about making sure that data science practices are ethical and fair, so I want to focus on that in my career and in my continued education!”

How have Carthage faculty had an impact on your life or Carthage career?

“The professors in the Computer Science Department — Professor Erlan Wheeler, Professor Mark Mahoney, and Professor Perry Kivolowitz — have had a huge impact on my life at Carthage! Prof. Kivolowitz in particular is always willing to take extra time to explain concepts to me, to give me career advice, or to refer me to an internship that would be a good fit. 

“I have also been fortunate enough to get to know Professor Michael McShane and Professor Seemee Ali. They have been incredibly generous with their time and are always willing to discuss the truths that we can uncover from great literature; I am so grateful to them both for investing time and effort into my personal growth and education.”

Favorite class

“My favorite class so far was Artificial Intelligence and Cognitive Modeling taught by Prof. Mahoney. It was interesting to get an inside peek into some of the newer technology that looks like magic from the outside. We spent the second half of the semester talking about machine learning, which has taken data science to the next level and has allowed data scientists to analyze huge amounts of data. Overall, I felt that I learned a lot in this class, and I found it fascinating!”

Toughest class

“Computer Organization was by far my toughest class. Our first few projects were all in assembly language, which was really challenging because you have to approach it completely different than most other programming languages. By the end of the course, I felt that I had a pretty good handle on assembly, but it took a lot of work to get there.”

Internships or on-campus employment

“I had an internship at The Commons in Milwaukee. Once a week, I drove up to Milwaukee to create an innovative project for West Bend Mutual Insurance. Through the internship, I learned a lot about networking, design thinking, and professionalism. The Commons team has been a huge asset to me because they also helped us plan Carthage’s first ever on-campus hackathon.

“I also had an internship at Abbvie in their decision sciences team. I was an “experiential intern,” which meant that I organized networking, educational, and social events for the team throughout the summer. I really enjoyed getting to know my team and the other interns throughout the summer, and I gained a much deeper understanding of how professionals approach real life data science problems.”

Opportunities at Carthage

“For my previous J-Term trips, I went to Austria and Germany with the Carthage Philharmonic. We had the opportunity to rehearse and perform in Vienna, visit Mozart’s home in Salzburg, tour beautiful architecture in Munich, and many other experiences! It was such a great chance to improve as a musician, to get to know the other members of the orchestra, and to learn more about the culture and art of Europe!

“Soon, I will be going on a religion J-Term trip to Tanzania, and I am looking forward to making even more memories and learning about another culture that is so different from ours.”


“I received the Clausen Presidential Scholarship. This scholarship has been a blessing. It has lightened the financial burden of college and has allowed me to take advantage of opportunities like J-Term trips!”

Campus involvement

“I am involved in a lot of different corners of campus! I play viola in the Carthage Philharmonic, I am the president of Carthage’s Data Science Club, and I am heavily involved in the InterVarsity Christian Fellowship and the Computer Science Club.”

Favorite moments and memories at Carthage

“Many of my favorite Carthage moments have been with the Carthage Philharmonic! I am so grateful to be a part of that community — everyone in the orchestra is so accepting of each other, and Professor Edward Kawakami makes it a super comfortable space to learn and make great music. Getting to perform in Vienna and to be a part of the Christmas Festival each year has been a huge blessing.

“In addition to Philharmonic memories, I really enjoyed going to Urbana, an InterVarsity conference, last winter. There were 12 students from Carthage and 10,000 students from all around the world, and it was a great opportunity for us to get to know each other better and to learn more about the Bible.”

Biggest surprise so far

“I have been really surprised by just how many opportunities are available at Carthage. Professors are always letting us know about projects that they want student help on, hackathons in the area, internships that are hiring, etc. I have been so impressed with all of the professional, academic, and social opportunities that have presented themselves during my time here at Carthage.”

What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?

“I think eight-year-old me would think I was nerdy for being so invested in math and science! When I was a kid, I wanted to stay as far away from the sciences as possible because my dad was an engineer, and I thought that ‘wasn’t cool.’ Looking back on it now, it comes as no surprise that I ended up in the major that I did. I have always enjoyed puzzles, logic, and problem solving. I can now say confidently that I love being a computer science major and that I am, in fact, ‘not cool.’”

Why should other students consider your major? What advice do you have for them?

“Don’t be intimidated by computer science or data science. In middle schools and high schools, every student learns the basics of math, history, biology, chemistry, etc. Unfortunately, schools don’t usually teach programming or analytics, so the subject can feel intimidating.

“If you are a hard-working person and you like problem solving, then you will do well as a computer science or data science major! Don’t be afraid to take a class and see if it is the right fit for you.”

  • Quick Facts

    • Carthage is named a Best Midwestern College by The Princeton Review (2021), a designation given to only 25 percent of four-year schools.

    • The Tower, Carthage’s newest residence hall, provides some of the best views on campus — if not in the Midwest! In addition to #carthageviews of the lake from seven stories up, residents enjoy suite-style living and two floors of shared campus spaces for gaming, cooking, group meetings, or quiet studying. Learn more about all housing options.

    • You’re going to need brain fuel. Grab a morning coffee and a snack and Starbucks or Einstein Bros. Bagels. Later, meet friends at “The Caf,” where the specials change daily but the staples are constant, or swing through “The Stu” for wings, a burrito, or a sub. A new option, Carthage Cash, even covers some off-campus meals.

    • More than 90% of Carthage alumni report that they have secured a job or are continuing their studies six months after graduation. Visit The Aspire Center.

    • 91% of employers say critical thinking, communication, and problem-solving skills matter more than your major when it comes to career success. Learn more about how the liberal arts prepare you for a successful career.

    • Lots of schools wear the four-year label. Carthage stands behind it. More than 90% of Carthage graduates earn their degrees in four years. Learn more

    • Computer science students watch Prof. Mark Mahoney’s recorded lecturers in their free time, so he can nearby “when they do their real learning,” he says. He has company: Physics professor Brant Carlson’s quantum mechanics video playlist has been viewed more than 170,000 times. 

    • Oscars. Emmys. Tonys. Golden Globes. The playwrights we’ve brought in have them. Each year, the Carthage Theatre Department commissions an original script by a renowned playwright for its New Play Initiative. Carthage students then work with the writer to stage it. 

    • Carthage has ranked as a top Fulbright producer for four of the past five years. Read about Carthage Fulbright winners.

    • Things look new at Carthage because they are. Our science center, student union, athletic and recreation center, and numerous residence halls have all been constructed or newly renovated in the last 15 years.

    • Carthage offers majors, minors, and concentrations in more than 50 areas of study, from marketing to neuroscience, nursing to music theatre.

    • Our Summer Undergraduate Research Experience offers select students a research budget, one-on-one mentoring with a professor, and 10 weeks of analyzing, deciphering — and getting paid.

    • So the lake is kind of a focal point, but there’s a lot more to love about our campus — like the fact that our more than 80-acre campus is also an arboretum and wildlife sanctuary. Focused on keeping campus lush forever, we plant between 50 and 75 new trees every year from a variety of species.

    • Carthage was founded in 1847. That’s more than 170 years of leaders, makers, and go-getters going out and going forth. Read more about Carthage’s rich history.

    • More than 90 percent of students receive financial aid. Carthage awards more than $20 million in scholarship and grant assistance. That includes $5.5 million in competitive scholarships in business, mathematics, science, languages, the fine arts, leadership, and overall academic strength. Learn what’s available.

    • Abraham Lincoln was an early Trustee of the College, and U.S. Secretary of State John Hay was a Carthage alum. The two still have a proud place on our campus. Spend some time with them in our Sesquicentennial Plaza. On warm days you’ll find professors leading their classes here.

    • Come to Carthage; hear yourself think — think … think …
      Legend has it that Sesquicentennial Plaza holds a perfect echo. Just stand with both your feet on the “1847,” face Straz, and start talking. “You’re the only one who can hear you, but you’ll be crystal clear,” promises English and theatre alumna Mikaley Osley.

    • Our Great Lake provides Carthage students with some amazing views. Think classes on the beach, lake views from the lab, and sunrises from your dorm room. “I love waking up in the morning with the sun shining off the lake. Nothing compares to the view in the morning,” recalls biology and neuroscience major Ann O’Leary.

    • Carthage awards up to 35 Presidential Scholarships each year, which range from $25,000 up to full tuition. Learn more.

    • For a full decade, NASA has selected Carthage students to conduct research aboard its zero-gravity aircraft. Lately, the stakes have risen. A team of underclassmen is grinding to prepare a tiny but powerful Earth-imaging satellite for launch to the International Space Station. Learn more about the space sciences at Carthage

    • Carthage is the only college or university in the Midwest where every freshman takes a full-year sequence of foundational texts of the Western intellectual tradition. Learn about Intellectual Foundations.

    • With a student-faculty ratio of 13:1, your professors will know who you are. They will also know who you want to be — and how to get you there. Meet our faculty.

    • There are more than 130 student organizations on campus, from Amnesty International to Fencing to Frisbee, Chem Club to Stand Up Comedy. See how easy it is to get involved.

    • True story: There are more than 27 art galleries, a dozen museums, and nine theatres within 25 miles of Carthage. Some highlights: The nationally recognized Racine Art Museum, the world-renowned Art Institute of Chicago, and the Milwaukee Art Museum. Learn more about our location.

    • What’s better than one professor? Two professors. What’s better than two professors? Two professors from totally different fields teaching a single class. There’s debate. Discussion. Differing perspectives. This is where the magic happens. That’s why every student takes a Carthage Symposium.

    • You can’t hide here — not with only 17 other students in the classroom with you. That’s going to be rough some mornings. But later, when you’re able to argue your point of view thoughtfully, express your opinions succinctly, and meet challenges head-on, without fear … Yep, you’ll thank us.

    • Carthage is ranked in the Top 5 in the country for student participation in short-term study abroad. Every J-Term, hundreds of students travel all over the world on faculty-led study tours. Imagine a month in Sweden, Rome, Cuba, Senegal, India, Japan …