Computer science student Brianna Davis chose MSOE because of the tight-knit community that empowers her to make connections, collaborate and create.

“The small class sizes were really important to me,” said Davis. “I don’t feel like just a number here. I know the names of most of the people in my classes, I recognize them on the streets. It’s the feel of a real learning community.” 

MSOE’s average class size is 13 students, which enables students like Davis to work closely with one another and receive one-on-one assistance from professors. “I love being able to talk to my professors and build connections with them so that when I need help in school, I am comfortable going to them with my questions,” said Davis.

Through these close connections, Davis was introduced to the CREATE Institute by Professor Doug Nelson during her freshman studies project.

“I learned about servant leadership through my freshman studies project. We provided free face masks and sanitizing products to all students on campus. If you see anyone with a black servant leadership mask, that’s from my project. We got the funding from CREATE, which is where I learned about them.”

After the project, Nelson invited Davis to take his servant leadership class and encouraged her to apply to be a CREATE Student Fellow. By being introduced to the concept of servant leadership early on, Davis says she’s prepared to hit the ground running and put her passions into practice as a Student Fellow.

“Being a CREATE Student Fellow makes me proud. I’m proud to represent the key values of MSOE, and I look forward to putting those values into action through my projects and connections I build within MSOE and the Milwaukee community.”

Davis is excited to dive into the community projects this year and sharpen her leadership skills. “My goal is to know more than I came in with. Every day I learn more about myself, my community and what it means to be a leader. I think that by the end of the year, I can stand tall as a passionate leader, value creator, leader of character and responsible professional.”

In addition to being a CREATE Student Fellow, Davis also is a member of the Lambda Zeta Nu sorority. Her sorority participates in campus and community events such as Susan G. Komen and American Cancer Society Breast Cancer Walks and Special Olympics Wisconsin Polar Plunge.

Davis’ favorite part about MSOE is the support of the learning community and freedom to try new things. “This is a place I feel safe to fail and learn from my failures. I can try something new and not be ashamed that I’ve never done it before because everyone is here to support me and make me better.”