Duy Dang, a fifth-year senior business information systems and computer science double major, received the Upsilon Pi Epsilon (UPE) Special Recognition Award. UPE is an international computer science honor society that recognizes young men and women who excel in computing and information disciplines. Each year TCU students are nominated for the UPE Special Recognition Award. Dang stood out above other applicants and won the award receiving a $1,500 scholarship.
Dang, originally from Vietnam, participated in many professional opportunities that qualified him for this recognition. Last summer, Dang, along with two other students and Associate Professor Liran Ma, worked on a smart phone hearing aid app to help hearing impaired individuals regain their hearing, including their ability to hear higher frequency sounds. Dang believes this opportunity was the main reason why his UPE application stood out. Dang also had the chance to solve real-world problems in professional environments through his IT internships with Alcon and Citibank.
Professor and Department Chair James Comer inspired Dang to become a computer science major. Dang initially enrolled in Comer’s Intro to Programming class because he felt something was missing in his former academic major selection. Comer recommended that Dang consider a major in computer science in addition to business information systems. Comer gave Dang the confidence to do so. Dang also was able to extend his financial aid scholarship to a fifth year so he could graduate in May 2016 with a double degree.
Dang believes the Department of Computer Science emphasizes a personalized learning approach. The professors focus on their students and encourage them to pursue further higher education. He said they think about their student’s futures and see the best in them. Staff and faculty invest in the program, and spend quality time with their students.
Dang believes that TCU and the department played a crucial role in his achievements. Through the computer science and business programs, his presentation, communication and teamwork skills vastly improved and became a vital and rewarding part of his undergraduate experience.
“TCU focuses on your ability to communicate and foster a team environment rather than an individualistic way of working. Also, instead of relying on memorization I can think on the spot, and communicate and relay information better to an audience,” Dang said.
Dang’s receipt of the UPE Special Recognition Award demonstrates his collegiate accomplishments and capacity to achieve after graduation. His future looks full and bright no matter what he decides to pursue next.