Mao Yuanqi: Find Your Way and Keep Moving

Major:Computer Science

Future:Master of Public Policy Analysis in the University of Chicago

Mao Yuanqi still remembered what his high school teacher said, “You will not be stressful when you enter the college.”

When he came to WKU, he was confused at times, but later he found and followed his goal to the University of Chicago. The past four years in WKU has witnessed his complete change.

From anxiety to proficiency

In 2015, Mao Yuanqi, then a shy freshman, knew little about campus life and did not know how to manage his time; Reading and writing was a big problem for him due to his limited vocabulary when he encountered the American teaching methodologies and English immersion in WKU.

But he soon found the right track. Speaking of their own learning technique, Mao gave his answer–repeat, that is to review what he learned over and over again. “I still remember I only got 70 or more in a major course for the first time. If I do not get improved, I will get a C in this course. Later I tried to ask the teacher, toil over on my textbook and finally got an A. I was happy about it, because it was a kind of affirmation for my ability.” he said.

At the same time, he tried to manage his own time, and recorded the troubles from mismanaging his time, and used them as a reminder. Also, he followed the principle of deadline first, and never overdue his homework. After knowing how to manage his fragment time, he considerably improved his efficiency.

In this way, his GPA skyrockets from 3.3 to more than 3.9 each semester since second semester of sophomore. Also he was awarded with various scholarships, such as WKU Academic Scholarship Class III for AY 2016-2017, WKU Academic Scholarship Class II for AY 2017-2018 and Research & Innovation Scholarship, and Honorable Mention (top 30%) in the Mathematical Contest in Modeling.

From WKU Student Research Day to international academic conference

At school, Mao is a student ambassador actively participating in the school activities, and certified as excellent tutor from WKU Student Academic Support Service Center.

He actively participated in scientific research and academic exchanges. His research result has not only been displayed on the exhibition platform of WKU Student Research Day, but also in the IBSS conference held at Waseda University where he conducted the presentation of the research results in English and published on Integrative Business and Economics Research(RIBER) with Professor Chen Rongjuan in the summer vacation of 2018. Referring to this experience, he said, “It is only when you go out that you become more aware of your strengths and weaknesses, and meeting with professors and doctorates from all over the world gives me a rare opportunity to practice and learn. They are really kind and patient and give me a lot of advice on my research.”

It is in this summer that he won Meritorious Scholarship from the University of Chicago, which laid the groundwork for him to get an offer from the University of Chicago.

In his spare time, he likes sports and he always goes to the gym with his classmates, or plays badminton and basketball.

Four years’ achievement in WKU

In April of this year, he received four Admission Notifications,including the Master of Public Policy Analysis from University of Chicago and $10,000 Scholarship, Master of Business Analysis from Purdue University and $6,000 Scholarship,Master of Business Analytics from Carnegie Mellon University and A$27,000 Scholarship and Master of Business Analytics from Wake Forest University.

This is an affirmation for his school career. Mao said he was especially grateful to Professor Madasser Nasser, a former Professor from College of Science and Technology, who wrote a letter of recommendation for him even though he has left WKU; and Professor Chen Rongjuan from College of Business and Public Management, an enlightened mentor on his way to analytical learning.

Referring to the four-year harvest of the university, he said, “Many students don’t understand why senior students advise them to study calculus and linear algebra which they think are just formulas and calculations. But when you learn above the middle level, you will find that a lot of knowledge can be used to solve a variety of problems.”

Second, the idea of programming. In every programming lesson he has learned, one thing that revolves around is to stay thirsty. “You can see the advantages and disadvantages of an algorithm, which inspires you to innovate, and you’ll wonder when you’re going to use it and what you’re going to do with it to make it more efficient. To sum up, what matters more than technology is your desire for optimization.”

Now, he is preparing for his master degree in the University of Chicago. “Always be optimistic. When you make a decision, don’t regret it and try your best with resources in hand.” He said.


By Zhou Yucheng