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Al-Banna, Omar Rashid

Omar Al-Banna
Civil Engineering

What is the RISE area of interest during your first year and why?: 

My area of interest for my first year is research. Part of my decision of coming to UMD was because of its status as a research institution. I believe participating in research with a department mentor will provide me with an important set of skills that will be valuable in the future as well as the opportunity to be exposed to advancements in my field of study.

What is the RISE area of interest during your second year and why?: 

My area of interest for my second year is entrepreneurship. Intending to start my own business in the future, I believe my involvement in this program will expose me to an environment characterized by innovation and leadership. This will hopefully equip me with a skill set that will facilitate my transition into the world of business in my field of engineering and improve my chances of enjoying a successful career.

What are your involvements and or extracurricular activities?: 

As of the Fall 2014 semester, I have been involved in the local chapter of Engineers Without Borders. Last semester, I worked on a team that designed a storm and waste water drainage system in a rural town in Ethiopia. I am also a tutor at the Math Success Program sponsored by the Department of Resident Life. Every week, I offer aid to students struggling in a wide range of courses offered by the math department. Finally, I am an active member of the on-campus Men’s Club Soccer team.

What is your cool engineering experience?: 

Coming from high school relatively inexperienced compared to some of my fellow engineering majors, my favorite engineering experience was designing the sensors and controls of my team’s hovercraft in the ENES100 course I took my freshman year. I led the sub-team that wrote and tested the code which controlled all of the hovercraft’s mechanical functions. This was a new and exciting experience for me because it gave me an opportunity to use my theoretical knowledge in a real world application for the first time.