#WomeninSTEM · #WomeninTech · inspiration · women who reign

Women Who Reign: Alyssa Liu

“Be somebody nobody thought you could be.” – William Chapman

Tell us about yourself along with a fun fact!
I’m a junior studying computer science and linguistics while pursuing the Segal Design Certificate at Northwestern University.  I grew up in Naperville, IL doing mostly creative and hands-on hobbies, particularly drawing and DIY.  Indie music, tiny food, quirky stationery, and baby animals are some of my absolute favorite parts of life.

I used to play cello professionally and taught lessons during high school!

What # would define your life journey?
(“work in progress”) I’ve switched gears many times so far on this adventure, most recently shifting from programming towards design, and I’ve truly come to realize that nothing is every permanent.  People and ideas will come and go, but at the end of each day, you always have yourself, and no one can take that away from you.  You’re always working on the project that is yourself: improving yourself, sharpening your skills, learning and experiencing new things.  It’s never quite complete, but that means you’re always progressing, and that’s the beauty of it.

Favorite website / app:
Yume by Helios
This is probably the most beautiful and mesmerizing digital music experience I’ve ever encountered and interacted with!  I love how it’s an ever-evolving piece of art that complements the atmospheric music.

Song that makes you want to dance:
Apollo by Last Dinosaurs. My favorite song for the past year!  It exudes so much carefree happiness.

Challenge you’ve faced and how you overcame it:
Especially during my sophomore year, I felt like I “didn’t belong” in CS.  I didn’t quite “get it” in classes a lot of the time, and I felt bad for having to rely on others so often.  But then I made the decision to re-explore an area I do feel confident in, and that’s design.  I realized that designing with an understanding of both the technical side and the human side is what I was meant to do, and it was so liberating knowing that I didn’t have to force myself to fit into some cookie cutter mold that the people around me deemed as “right.”  Rather, we should focus on what we feel is the path meant for ourselves.  Finding your niche in this world is a gratifying and vital part of life, so it’s crucial that to keep exploring and keep defining your own niche, regardless of what others may try to tell you.

Ideal Job:
I would love to someday start my own design firm.  In particular, integrating augmented reality experiences into our everyday lives would be a fascinating space to explore!  I hope my work can help people feel and more wonder and connectivity in their world – to each other, to their surroundings, and to their passions.

What knowledge would you impart to women in order for them to REIGN their lives?
Be fearless and listen to yourself, always.  You probably hear that all the time, but for me the biggest struggle was actually applying turning these ideas into actions.  It takes putting yourself out there and doing something to change your life!  Always be self-aware, and stand up for yourself to get what you want and need.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s