Student seeks new opportunities with computer science degree
In the 21st century, technology touches nearly every industry and has become inextricably woven into people’s daily lives at work and at home. Karthik Lokesh recognized the prevalence of technology, and decided to make it the focus of his career.
As an undergraduate, he studied password encryption and then went to work in information security.
“Every organization on the planet has a need for the domain of information security,” Karthik said.
After three years of steadily advancing from security engineer to security analyst to senior security analyst, he hit a wall.
“I wanted to look into the management side,” Karthik said.
After learning about the Master of Science in Computer Science at City University of Seattle, he decided to relocate from India to Seattle to pursue the degree.
“The combination of technical and information security courses plus the management side was perfect for me,” Karthik said.
Studying at CityU
The master’s in computer science program at CityU teaches students a broad set of technological skills and prepares them to manage technology projects.
“I enjoyed courses in software testing and compilers, and really liked the information security courses,” Karthik said. “[The information security courses] were an extension of what I’d been doing the last three years, and I was finally able to define it.”
He particularly appreciated the applied nature of the program and its relevance to the workplace.
“I like that the approach of the courses emphasized what we were learning, rather than how much we could remember, because that is what we’ll do in our careers,” Karthik said. “The assignments and grading are based on real world, industry standards.”
In addition to the format of the courses, he enjoyed the opportunity to connect with faculty through in-person classes.
“I prefer onsite classes because of the extra interaction with professors and the ability to get additional information,” Karthik said. “You get to know the professors, and there’s a more personal connection.”
He also appreciated the support he received from his advisor.
“Sima Janka was great, I am thankful to have her as my advisor,” Karthik said. “She always responded to my requests no matter how silly they looked, and she was always there as support.”
Experiences in Seattle
The move from India to Seattle was a positive one for Karthik.
“Seattle as a city is great,” Karthik said. “The weather is comfortable to me.”
For his first nine months in the city, he lived in CityU’s residence hall. As someone who enjoys walking, the location was perfect for him.
“I walked all the way to the Space Needle and then down to Century Link Field,” Karthik said.
In fact, he has enjoyed the area so much that as he prepares to finish his degree this spring, he is looking for career opportunities in the area.
With Seattle’s booming technology sector in mind, there are few cities so well suited for a talented and experienced computer science graduate.