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What's in your backpack?: A day in the life of a mechanical engineering student

Mechanical engineer student Dan Jira shows what can be found in his backpack on a daily basis. (Northern Review photo/Dominic Turnea)

Mechanical engineer student Dan Jira shows what can be found in his backpack on a daily basis. (Northern Review photo/Dominic Turnea)

Regardless of one’s major, everyone needs a backpack to carry essentials, whether that be textbooks, a laptop, or for some mechanical engineering majors, a soldering kit. 

Freshman mechanical engineering student Dan Jira shares his daily schedule, along with the intriguing and fascinating items that could be found in his backpack. Jira’s day officially begins with his Introduction to Engineering Pt. 2 class around 11 a.m., a class that doesn't require a textbook. It’s Jira’s favorite class, stating that:

Intro to Engineering is my favorite, because it’s an application class. You're thinking and doing more.  This semester, for example, you have to find a solution to providing clean water to a village in Africa. We’re working on building a prototype.

For the class, Jira simply needs his laptop and a notebook. Additionally, Jira carries with him a large stack of note cards, much larger than the standard size. By having extra-large note cards, more material could be recorded and used as a study reference.

Around 2 p.m., Jira goes to his writing seminar class in Dukes Memorial. After the class ends, he must travel back to Mathile Center within ten minutes. Sometimes, his writing seminar class goes over five minutes, therefore he must hurry to Mathile some days. Jira then goes to Calculus 1, a class that doesn’t allow a calculator; however, a simple notebook can be found in his book bag, along with a textbook. 

Besides the ordinary book, laptop and notebook, engineering majors like Jira have a variety of interesting materials in their backpacks. One prime object is a soldering kit, which is used to join wires--specifically electric wires--together. The kit doesn’t take up too much space in the bag, either. Near the front pockets of Jira’s backpack one can find a Wi-Fi adaptor and a laptop charger. 

Jira possesses many fascinating objects that show uniqueness and individuality. As one of the long-boarders of ONU, Jira keeps a skating tool in his book bag, readjusting his board wheels when necessary.  Additionally, besides a stress ball shaped like an airplane, highlighters, and mini writing pads, Jira revealed a peculiar item: tea bags. 

Backpacks tell a lot about students and their majors. Jira shows his passion and innovation of his major through his personality, and simply by revealing what he packs into his backpack every day.