Back to the Future


Every year, the Adecco Engineering & Technology Future Engineers Scholarship is awarded to one talented, deserving high school senior who plans to study engineering in college. Last year’s winner was Ryan Humble, who is now in his second semester at Yale. We recently caught up with Ryan and asked him to take a look back at our interview with him from last year. Check out what he had to say, and find out how his views of college, his studies and his future have changed.

Q: What about college life do you feel will be most challenging to adapt to?

Then: “It’s hard to find one thing. Having a roommate is one of the first things to come to mind. The second is not having home-cooked meals. However, I anticipate the rigor of college to be the most challenging to adapt to, but I do not doubt that I cannot handle it.”

Now: “Actually, none of these things were the hardest to adapt to. I can’t say anything was particularly challenging. However, two things were surprising: the amount of freedom I had (more than I expected) and the overwhelming opportunities that existed (the plethora of classes that were available, the enormous number of clubs, and other countless opportunities).

There were days where I had to choose between going to Ultimate practice and attending a speech by the U.N. Secretary-General. A cursory look at this choice screams to attend the speech; yet, there are so many opportunities such as the latter that it would be virtually impossible to play Ultimate. Does it mean more to be part of a team or meet such notable people on a regular basis? Choices I had not expected to encounter (although this is a great choice to have).”

Which classes are you most excited to take?

Then:  “I am quite excited to take this special freshman program I applied to called Perspectives on Science and Engineering (I am still waiting to see if I got in or not; crossing my fingers).”

Now:  “I got into Perspectives on Science and Engineering and thoroughly enjoyed the presentations. From the biological and physical structuring that gives some birds their color to growing lungs to particle physics, the presentations covered a large number of fields yet remained engaging to everyone. However, the class I enjoyed the most was my physics class. The professor was thoroughly engaging and the material was as well.”

Do you plan on joining any extracurricular organizations?

Then:  “I plan on joining Yale’s Ultimate Frisbee club team (SuperFly) and possibly Yale’s Triathlon club. As far as non-athletic groups are concerned, I have no idea.”

Now:  “I did join the Ultimate team. Non-athletically, I joined the Yale Undergraduate Business Society, the Yale Student Investment Group, and Engineers without Border. I have absolutely loved the latter two; I plan to leave the business society after this year in favor of the Yale Racing team (hybrid car design and racing).”

Ryan’s advice for high school seniors hasn’t changed:

“Be yourself. Don’t try to sell yourself as somebody you are not, but do try to sell yourself. Scholarships (and general college admission for that matter) are all about how well you can sell yourself; be your own salesperson.”

To learn more about the 2013 Future Engineers Scholarship, and to give a high school senior you know the chance to win $2,500 towards their engineering studies, click here.

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