Rick Bingen was accepted into the University of Wisconsin—Madison’s Computer Science school, but he chose to attend Carthage because he fell in love with this place, and the small class sizes it offers.
“Computer Science is a hard subject to learn, and therefore the smaller class sizes help immensely,” Rick said. “Your professor can find your inner talent and give you projects to help develop that talent.”
Rick knows that Carthage will help him immensely on his way to becoming a computer software engineer. In just the first two years of school, computer science majors must take four classes that teach the basics of programming in Java and C++. “This is the foundation for any career that involves programming,” he said. “Also, the Computer Science Department has an ongoing software development project that really helps prepare me for the real world.”
“My career goal is to become a software engineer.”
“My favorite professor is Prof. Mark Mahoney. As the head of the Computer Science Department, he teaches most of the computer science classes, and as a student you get to know him very closely. Prof. Mahoney is a great teacher and is always willing to help.”
“My favorite class I have taken was Agile Software and Development, where we got real-world experience in developing software from scratch.”
“My toughest class was Data Structures, but once you make it through, you feel like you can do anything. I am currently the Supplemental Instructor for the course.”
Opportunities at Carthage
“I am currently working on a research project for the Computer Science Department. The project is to replace the old traditional version control and see how the code grows as things are added, replaced, or removed.”
Favorite moments at Carthage
“My favorite moment at Carthage was last year during the winter when classes were cancelled after 4 p.m. because of a snowstorm. There was a huge snowball fight in the middle of The Oaks circle.”
Biggest surprise so far?
“My biggest surprise everyday is how many people I know on a name basis, both students and faculty.”
What would your 8-year-old self think of you now?
“I would have been quite surprised. As a kid, I always wanted to be a police officer or an artist, but the computer industry has boomed since I was a kid. Most people no longer use dial-up, and pretty much everything electronic we use can connect to the Internet. With an industry that changes so quickly, it is hard to have guessed that I would be on this career path.”
Advice for other students considering your major
“My biggest piece of advice is to get to know your professors. You are at a small school, and this makes it easier to know your teachers. The better you know your instructor, the more opportunities you will get.”