Now that my first year of college is finished, I can now look back and reflect on how I’ve changed within the past year and what I’ve learned from my experiences. Of course, the switch from high school to college is a big adjustment for everyone, and with more independence over my own decisions, learning and future than ever before, I naturally feel like I have grown a lot as an individual. One thing I feel that I have learned from this year is to use my barriers as an advantage by allowing them to motivate me and drive me to success. The biggest adjustment I felt I’ve had to make this year was coming from an all-girls high school and going into a male dominated field, but this is exactly what has taught me to use my barriers as my motivation. I have never been competitive in the classroom, so I’ve found it easy in the past to allow myself to slack off a bit in my work when I know I can still get my desired grade. This year, as I am taking classes with mostly men, I have found myself becoming more competitive and motivated to work as hard as I can to show that women belong in the engineering field. As I achieve high grades in my classes I feel proud of how I am representing my gender and want to just keep pushing myself further and further to do better and better. Majoring in a male-dominated field was something I was apprehensive of before coming to the University of Cincinnati, and honestly, I still am, but I have learned to use this to my advantage to keep pushing myself. I am hoping to use this lesson outside of the classroom too as I begin co-op next year. My goal is to showcase my talents and successes when searching for a co-op and then to utilize my abilities when I am working. Next year, I am also looking forward to being a member of the social committee of the University Honors Program Ambassadors. From what I have heard from past members, the committee is what you make of it, so I am setting my goals high to make a difference in the honors program by building community and getting students involved in service events. I hope to get more involved within the university next year and join clubs of people that share my passions and interests.