Nathan Wetherell’s Spotlight Interview

We asked the peer mentors to answer some questions about their time here at UConn and give some simple tips and tricks to navigating the campus. Meet Nathan! A Senior majoring in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Astrophysics and a concertation in Aerospace.

Nathan Wetherell

What semester is this for you?

8th (final) semester

When are you graduating?

May 2022

What is your major?

Mechanical Engineering

Did you minor in anything or focus on a specific concentration within your major?

Minor: Astrophysics

Concentration: Aerospace

Where are you from?

South Windsor, Connecticut

Are you in a learning community? (which one) How has it helped you?

Honors (sophomore and junior year). It is good to have a smaller community of people to be around to push you towards your academics.

Are you involved with any on-campus activities or organizations?

Peer mentors and the Concrete Canoe. The University Design project is also very time intensive.

Where is your favorite spot on campus to study or hang out?

2nd/3rd floor of the union. Especially during finals week when the library is busy, if you find a quiet corner in the library, you can get lost for hours without being interrupted.

What would you say is the easiest part of your academic career at UConn?

Didn’t have to write that much. No super long papers to do.

What would you say is the hardest part of your academic career at UConn?

Coming to UConn, the hardest part is balancing all the different aspects of your life. Learning to adapt to sudden changes is a skill that needs to be worked on. Focusing on your schoolwork and making progress takes time and consistent effort.

Plans after graduation?

Doing a MED program at Pratt & Whitney.

Is there any advice you would give to incoming freshmen (in your major or in general)?

Make sure you have a passion for what you do. Take the time to figure out what it is that YOU want to do. When you have a passion and drive for what you do it won’t feel like work.

Do you have any tips for navigating campus?

  • Take advantage of the tours
  • Reach out to peer mentors (I’ve always wanted to give an informal tour)
  • Be your own advocate – If you reach out and look you will find someone who will help you

How did you handle online schooling vs in person schooling? Which do you like better?

  • In person is better, personally (a lil old school)
  • With online schooling, it is harder to pay attention
  • To compensate, try to make the online environment reflect the in person environment.

How was adjusting to life at UConn like for you? Would you have done anything differently? 

Going from a known support base was difficult but getting involved is important. It is easier to drop things than to try to pick them up later.

What resources would you say are the most helpful for first year School of Engineering students?

Peer mentors, the W and Q center, the tutoring center are all great examples of helpful resources. It is important to be your own advocate and look for help, because there are multiple resources you can take advantage of.

Any fun facts?

The summer after my freshman year I had to leave a camping trip early because a bear stole our food.