McKay Lindsay, Eloy Hernandez and Katie Hughes spell out OSU. They are three of the graduates from the 2016 class of the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in the College of Engineering at Oregon State University.

Congratulations to the 2016 graduates of the School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science! We celebrate all the different paths that got you to where you are. Here are three of our 534 graduates.

McKay Lindsay
Electrical and computer engineering

At age 38, McKay Lindsey was laid off from his job as an electrical technician and decided to make a life change. So, with a little convincing of his wife, he enrolled in electrical engineering Oregon State University and will complete his undergraduate degree this year — but he is not done with school yet. Through the Accelerated Master’s Program, McKay will be staying on an extra year to receive his master’s degree.

Mckay’s years of experience doing training in his job and as a Boy Scout leader made him a natural as a teaching assistant at Oregon State, which he did for three years. He also has three young daughters who he hopes to inspire to pursue fields in science and technology. He brings them to campus when he can for events such as Engineering Expo and Bring Your Kids to Campus Day.

“I think we need more women in engineering, so I’m all for encouraging young ladies that they have aptitudes in STEM as much as anybody else,” McKay says.

Eloy Hernandez
Electrical and computer engineering

Eloy Hernandez wanted to break the cycle of poverty he grew up in, and sought out opportunities to better himself and others. Eloy was inspired by the people who helped him along the way and he returned that service when he came to Oregon State where he was a mentor for the College Assistance Migrant Program for four years, and earned the Mentor of the Year award.

“I want a make a difference for myself, for others, and my family. It’s what motivates me to get through college,” Eloy says.

Eloy has been an active member of Society for Advancement of Chicano and Native Americans in Science, and one of the highlights of his time as an Oregon State student was attending their national conference in Washington D.C. where he heard Dr. Ernest Moniz, U.S. Secretary of Energy speak about the future of energy.

“It made me really excited to know that I would be able to be part of that future,” says Eloy, who focused his studies on power systems.

Katie Hughes
Computer science
Psychology minor

Native Oregonian, Katie Hughes knew she wanted to go to Oregon State before she knew what her major would be. “My family is full of Beavers, so I was already bleeding orange,” she says.

Katie is graduating a year early by coming in to college with credits from high school and taking online classes while she was on internships. As a student worker for Ecampus she has been developing a homework app for a permaculture MOOC. She also participated in the Oregon State marching band color guard for three years.

“I like being peppy and getting others to buy into that,” she says.

Katie already has a job lined up with AppNexus as a software developer. “I’m really excited to be involved in the Portland developer network,” she says.