Christine Curran | Houston, TX
University of Michigan, BS Chemical Engineering, 2010
Christine is currently a User Support Engineer at ExxonMobil. She describes a typical day: We at ExxonMobil are constantly looking for new technology solutions to “Take on the world’s toughest energy challenges.” The birth of computers revolutionized the oil industry to allow us to find, develop, and produce new assets throughout the world safely and efficiently.
I started with ExxonMobil as a User Support Engineer in our I.T. organization in August 2010. I support and consult with users globally, as distant as Australia and Indonesia, to model oil and gas facilities. As I take my early career milestone coursework (over 10 full weeks of training in Year 1!), I also help with software training for my new hire peers. It is something different every day from testing new products to walking users through a tough simulation. I really enjoy it so far, and look forward to where my career will take me!
Christine describes how MRC has benefited her: It sounds corny, but I truly discovered myself in the Michigan Research Community. Like many others, I joined MRC because I thought research would boost my med school application. Instead, the program opened a world of new fields and philosophies, and only in that crazy sea of possibility can you truly find your passion! I found I preferred the teamwork and “big picture” problem-solving of engineering to medicine. The MRC staff and my peers in the program (many at great med schools, law schools, and professions around the country) were so supportive during that first exploratory year. Remember: there are many paths to success, and it is ok to take a couple detours! (As long as you are detouring to class most of the time!)
Words of wisdom from Christine: My dad always says, “Everything in moderation.” Four years ago, I would have said, “Yeah, yeah,” but our parents tend to be right sometimes, and balance is hugely important. The first-year it is inevitable that you will, at times, feel like a chicken running with your head-off. I want you to have the same great experience I had: learning all these new things, meeting many new people, and even FAILING sometimes (which can be very hard work!) Life truly is a marathon, not a race! Make time to rest your brain, body, and spirit. You will still have time to do the things that matter.
Christine passes on some advice: This is so hard! I love inspirational quotes. I think if I had to give the world only one piece of advice; however, it would be to respect others. I know, I just said life is a marathon, but like all races, marathons do end. It will be your character and not any worldly possession that remains. And THAT is the Michigan Difference I would like to show the world!