Amro Shanshal graduated from NIU’s College of Engineering and Engineering Technology in 2018 with a BS in mechanical engineering. He’s currently employed at Omron and pursuing a master’s degree. Here’s his story, in his words:
I joined NIU in the Fall of 2014 as an international student from the United Arab Emirates. My family and I emigrated to the UAE in 2006 after living in tough conditions for more than 3 years during the 2003 Iraq war. Living in the war has taught me two important lessons. First, I must always remain focused on learning from my experiences whether they are good or bad. Second, I should always try to make the most out of every situation. I believe everything happens for a reason and I am grateful for all of my experiences that have shaped me into who I am today.
After graduating with a mechanical engineering degree from NIU, I joined Omron’s graduate training and rotational program. I gained invaluable experience through technical and non-technical training, traveled and interacted with clients and shadowed experts in the automation business. I also worked on various projects for different departments such as customer service, marketing, product management, sales and analytics. I later transitioned to become a Safety Integration Specialist where I consult clients on how to safely operate machinery and meet the standards and am currently working on designing and building a quoting website.
I am excited to start my Master of Science in Analytics/Data Science at the University of Chicago this Autumn quarter. I will be pursuing my graduate studies part time while I simultaneously continue my full-time role at Omron. The biggest reason I feel prepared to handle the pressure, busy schedule and rigorous graduate studies is my experience at NIU. Being a mechanical engineering student at NIU has pushed me to always look for solutions, persevere, and stay focused. It was not only my courses that taught me these qualities, but also my involvement with the NIU community through various extracurriculars. I find extracurriculars crucial to a student’s success because they allow students to apply their knowledge from the classroom and learn valuable lessons that are not taught in the classroom. A big thanks to the faculty and staff at NIU for the incredible support during and after my time at the college.”