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Marcelino Galarza

My name is Marcelino Galarza and I am Computer Engineering major at UCF. I’m currently at the end of my junior year at UCF. I graduated from Chain of Lakes Collegiate High School in Winter Haven, Florida. One of my favorite classes that I’ve taken here at UCF would have to be Computer Science 1, which was taught by Dr. Sean Szumlanski. It was a challenging class for me because I didn’t have a strong background on computer programming, even though it fascinated me. This is the class that took me from liking programming to loving it. Thanks to Dr. Szumlanski’s lectures being incredibly interesting, to where you never wanted to miss a class and his passion for his students (He spent over 80 hours creating an interesting homework assignment for us).

There are two major reason why I wanted to become a STEM Ambassador. First is because growing up I didn’t know about STEM fields because of the lack of examples. I would like to inform kids about all these wonderful opportunities they have. Second is because during my time here at UCF I have gotten a lot of inspiration and help. For example my friend Jason who’s on the UCF programming team has been helping me for almost a year now to be a better programmer. He does it without expecting anything in return (He’s like a void function).

Words of wisdom for the future STEM students: You’re probably not going to like every class you have to take. You might ask yourself “Why do I need this class?”, and you may never get an answer that satisfies you. You’re also probably going to struggle along the way. Just know that in the end, anything worth having is going to be a challenge, and this is definitely worth having.

When I’m not studying I like to rock climb, run, go to the gym, eat, listen to music, read, and pass the time with friends.