From starting off as the help desk analyst in a small hospital to becoming the chief health care technical strategist for McAfee, a global cyber security company, Sumit Sehgal ’04 is a prime example of working your way up the corporate ladder to the top.
Sehgal’s interests in computers took off at an early age with an interest in flight simulation games on PCs and grew as he began dabbling in programming at school. The hobby evolved into a passion, which led him to pursue a path in computer engineering. Sehgal traveled from his hometown in India to Indiana where he began his college career at Purdue University. After realizing the large class environment wasn’t for him, he transferred to MSOE for its intimate class sizes and industry-experienced professors.
“I was intrigued by the faculty at MSOE,” said Sehgal. “Everyone had industry experience, which made classes more relatable when they implemented their extensive experience. Plus, their industry connections were invaluable.”
Even 15 years after graduation, Sehgal still talks today about his unique experience at MSOE and the valuable lessons he learned along the way.
“Junior and senior year were challenging but the quality of education made it worth it,” said Sehgal. “Although the quarter system was rigorous, the 11 weeks were well spent by implementing and applying what we learned in the first few weeks with hands on experiments. I loved learning about coding and working through problems with real life clients, which truly prepared me for jobs after college.”
Sehgal hopes current and future MSOE students share a similar college experience as he did and use all the resources MSOE provides.
“Students should take time to talk with faculty members and professors to make connections and learn more about internship opportunities. Faculty members know industry professionals all over the city and can connect you with professionals for job opportunities, a day-long shadow, and a variety of other valuable exercises and experiences.”
Most importantly, Sehgal wants students to cherish their four years at MSOE and have fun.
“Milwaukee has great things to offer, so branch out and have fun! It is a stressful four years, but I believe it molded me to be a better professional than a traditional university would have.”
Sehgal believes in taking risks to achieve success and experiencing new adventures. “If you can navigate the risk – take it! Taking risks took me from working at the helpdesk in a small hospital to running the largest health care security company in North America, and I am very proud of that.”
In his free time, the self-proclaimed “aviation geek” enjoys attending air shows, taking flying lessons, and traveling the world. He also enjoys collecting book bags with a quality ergonomic design as well as researching nanotechnology and quantum computing.