On her interests in law, inclusive technology and biking.Sophia Sneddon is a current Berkeley MEng candidate studying Bioengineering. Here, she shares her aspirations to become an attorney, her passion for inclusivity, and her love for biking.
What do you study and why did you choose it?In short, I am studying biomolecular engineering because I love chemistry and synthetic biology. When I first applied to college, my overarching goal was to become an attorney, so I felt compelled to major in philosophy or politics. However, I craved a more technical challenge. Engineering fit the bill and I knew from high school science classes that I liked chemistry and biology. Uniting these interests, I found myself in biomolecular engineering and on a path towards patent law. My love for my field of study grew as I was exposed to the fields of synthetic biology and chemical engineering.
What are your professional goals?After I graduate from the MEng program, I plan to attend law school in order to become a patent attorney. I aim to work with cutting-edge technologies and brilliant engineers, but I want to be on the legal side of tech. In my daily work, I know that I would rather study and write about inventions than design experiments. As a patent attorney, it would be my job to learn and write about innovative technologies.
What kind of impact do you want to have on the world?This is a tough one to answer. On a grand scale, the biggest challenge facing humans is climate change, so I would like to be involved in producing technologies aimed at making an impact on the planet, such as developing alternative proteins to meat. I also aim to one day have a scholarship fund for students in STEM because I believe that education equates to power, and I would like to see the fields of science and engineering become more accessible for all those who harbor an interest in it.
There is always more to learn about different perspectives and how your actions might affect others in unexpected ways.
Can you tell us more about the inclusive technology affinity group you’re leading?The inclusive technology affinity group is concerned with a broad range of topics. We have discussed the topics of women in STEM, inclusive design, and conscientious engineering. Our group is interested in those that are left out of the room when an invention is being created, and those that constitute a minority in their field. I was inspired to get involved because while I have led a research group before and emphasized inclusivity then, I also recognize my potential to learn and grow as an inclusive engineer. There is always more to learn about different perspectives and how your actions might affect others in unexpected ways, so I jumped at the opportunity to lead the inclusive tech group and to learn from and alongside my peers.
What are some of your hobbies/passions?I love to bake and bike. Currently, I’m on a macaron kick. There is just something satisfying about the process of making a meringue and forming perfect little circles of batter. As for biking, I love climbing up to Grizzly Peak and I recently did a century (100 miles) ride just to see if I could (I had a similar mentality towards earning an engineering degree). I have also been playing the piano since I was four years old. I’ve picked up yoga and running recently, too. For now, these hobbies are strictly non-work-related. However, I have developed patient thoroughness through baking, perseverance from biking, and dedication from my years of piano. I am sure these qualities will serve me well throughout my career. Connect with Sophia on LinkedIn and Instagram.
Humans of Fung: Sophia Sneddon, MEng ’22 (BioE) was originally published in Berkeley Master of Engineering on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.