Auburn Family

You're walking around Auburn's campus on your first day of college and are eager to begin your classes you signed up for over the summer.

When coming to college you expect to find your place in the major you planned to study in high school or even beyond. It doesn’t always work out that way, however. The stress of classes and the new freedom can throw you off your intended track and will cause you to have to find an unexpected place.

Laura Lopez, a senior, didn’t always plan to major always plan to major in industrial design. She started Auburn as a pre-architecture student in the fall of 2014 with a plan of being in Auburn’s architecture summer design studio. Excited to begin life at Auburn, she jumped into the pre-requisite classes with confidence.

However, the difficulty of the classes along with working a part-time job made succeeding in the major challenging. When it came time to be selected for the program, she didn’t have the mandatory GPA and was denied entrance. She was left to find a new major and new path.

“My initial thought was to find something similar because I love creating and imagineering,” Lopez said. “The industrial design major was already part of the College of Architecture and Design so my counselor suggested their summer program to me.”

Laura was accepted into the summer studio in the industrial design program and immediately started to succeed. She has always loved to draw and was able to show off her artistic abilities in her new major. She made it through the intense summer program and could start the professional program.

Since beginning the major, Lopez has felt at home and has fallen in love with the major.

“My experience in industrial design has been the best experience I was not expecting,” Lopez said. “This is definitely what I wanted to find at Auburn. In our studio classes, we get to talk one-on-one with the professors which gives us the chance to understand everything perfectly.”

Laura has been actively involved in the major. She has studied abroad in Ireland and Italy. She has also joined the club, Industrial Design Students of America, which has allowed her to make professional connections in the field across the United States.

She recently started an internship at the outdoor furniture company SunVilla in Pensacola, Florida. She got the internship after being referred by one of her professors.

“This internship is a great opportunity,” Lopez said. “I’m gaining so much experience.”

College can be a stressful part of your life. It’s ok if you don’t follow the path you set out for yourself. You may just find the path you are supposed to take just like Laura did.



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