Zach Wilder ’18 is a senior in the Information Management & Technology program from Charlotte, North Carolina.
How did you know about Syracuse?
I found out about Syracuse because both of my parents went here for graduate school. I threw my hat in the ring to see if I could get in, I applied all over the place. But when I visited, I thought this was a cool place.
Why did you choose the iSchool?
This is actually a horrible answer but I just picked the iSchool because I loved computers and I thought the iSchool sounded like IT. It was a happy accident and [when I] went on a tour, the place seemed awesome.
First impressions of the iSchool
I took lots of tech classes in high school so the environment was not that much of a change at first. I saw the ICE Box as a freshman, I thought it looked like Google. Everything is so colorful and you can write on the walls!
Dell PC or Mac?
Oh, Dell. I don’t like Mac.
On moving away for college
I thought going away from home was going to be hard. I know people travel from places farther away. I came from a high school where pretty much everyone stays in the same state and goes to the same schools. 700 miles away seemed daunting at first. I worked at summer camps in high school, which helped with the transition to college.
What are you doing after graduation?
I will be working for EY right outside of Washington D.C. A big part of why I wanted to work there was from a Road Trip I took my freshman year here. I fell in love with that city. I saw EY was a competitive company and formed connections, particularly with people who went to SU. I officially accepted my offer this past August. It felt pretty good.
“The sense of community is really cool here compared to other colleges … I think people who come here feel pride.”
– Zach Wilder ’18
What’s the most underrated thing about the iSchool?
I think that everyone in the iSchool knows this, but the sense of community is really cool here compared to other colleges.
No one really knows what the iSchool is. They think it’s some sort of computer science (which it’s not) or they think it’s communications. I think lots of people have this misconception and that makes this place underrated. This is a place that sets yourself up for a great future.
I think people who come here feel pride. When you talk to someone who is an alumni, they have a vested interest in your success. I think I have experienced that through my future employer.
Most important skill learned in college?
You learn to be independent and be an adult. I think I had lots of independence which helped the transition. Being able to handle the freedom that college gives you is a crucial part. It’s not something people talk about too much … but I think it is a huge part of how successful you are in college.
Can’t live without?
Fast food! Especially the new Chick-fil-A.
What makes you tick?
I have a couple of key people in my life that make me want to get up in the morning . I look forward to coming to school to see these people. It gets me walking out the door and go to class.
Do you have any advice for those coming to Syracuse University?
This is a unique environment. Our huge athletic status is fun. The fact that it snows 24/7 here. I think that is great especially coming from a place where it snows once or twice a year. You can do anything.
How do you want to be remembered?
A dedicated and spirited student. When I set my mind to something do something, that’s what I am going to do.