NSE - Nuclear Science & Engineering at MIT

PEOPLE

Carolena Ruprecht

Carolena Ruprecht ’16

What were your interests in high school?
In high school, my favorite classes were Calculus and Anatomy & Physiology. Outside of class, I enjoyed running on the cross-country team and performing in school musicals.

What is your favorite activity outside of the classroom?
During the school year, I really enjoy running along the esplanade and through Boston. In the summer, my favorite activity is swimming at the beach.

Why did you decide to major in course 22?
I am very interested in the global sustainability problem, particularly in the field of energy. I chose to study nuclear energy because it is a very exciting and challenging field. I enjoy getting to learn about various fields, such as engineering, materials science, physics, economics, and policy, and then synthesizing what I have learned to analyze and think of solutions to the various controversies and constraints surrounding nuclear energy.

What is you most memorable experience so far as a course 22 student?
It is hard to think of just one memorable experience. I think what I enjoy most about being a course 22 student is that we are such a small department, therefore I have really gotten close to the other course 22 students. We spend a lot of time together in the chateau (our lounge) and I have learned so much from conversing and collaborating with my peers. Although it is nice to pset together, I think I have learned the most from the long off-topic discussions that we use to procrastinate, typically regarding different controversies surrounding nuclear energy.

What would you like to do after graduating?
After graduating, I plan to commission as a Nuclear Surface Warfare Officer in the United States Navy. I am very excited to learn to drive ships, as well as to operate Naval nuclear reactors. In the far future, I hope to be a part of a project building new nuclear reactors in the United States.

PROFILE: Carolena Ruprecht: On board with nuclear engineering for the Navy


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About UROP in Course 22

What motivated you to sign up for a UROP in course 22?
As a nuclear engineering student, we learn a lot about the theory of nuclear energy and the engineering of nuclear reactors. I sought a UROP in course 22 because I was ready to get my hands dirty and discover the realities of working in the field of nuclear science and engineering. I wanted to strengthen the connection between what I had learned in lecture and what happens in the real world. UROP's are the perfect way to do just that.

What is/was the project you are working on?
The project I am working on involves using a particle accelerator to measure nuclear cross sections of Boron. I learn so much about various aspects of engineering through taking apart and operating the particle accelerator. My personal project was to build a particle filter.

What have you learnt by participating in this UROP?
While building the particle filter, I got to see how the theories of all the things I learned in 8.02 actually work in real life. I understand a lot more about electrical engineering now that I have had hands on experience. Through working with the accelerator as a whole, I got to learn a lot about pump systems and electrical engineering.

What is your advice to other students considering a UROP in Course 22?
Don’t be overwhelmed-jump in as soon as possible! I know I was nervous coming into the world of UROPs but now that I have taken the leap, I am so excited to be learning through this amazing opportunity.


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Department of Nuclear Science & Engineering

Massachusetts Institute of Technology
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Cambridge, MA 02139
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