Problem Solver

AUTHOR: Nina Welding

PUBLISHED: August 7, 2019

Seth Cattanach began his first year at Notre Dame with the intention of becoming a chemical engineer. The junior from Lake Elmo, Minnesota, is now a computer engineering major working toward a minor in engineering corporate practice.

"That's one of the great things about Notre Dame,” says Cattanach. “You don't need to know what you want to do when you start the engineering program. As a first-year student you have options you don't even know about yet ... from technical consulting to med school to patent law, academia, even the military. The thing is you're choosing a great program with tons of opportunities.”

Cattanach is interested in working with big data and machine learning once he graduates, whether that's as a data scientist or a technical consultant. His minor has taught him that engineering and business are a natural fit.

“Business problems aren't really that  much different than engineering problems,” he says. “You still have to analyze a situation and come up with a solution. What's more, many business problems require very technical solutions.” He believes that the Integrated Engineering and Business Practice sequence, the basis of his minor has given him a solid introduction to solving real-world business problems while also helping him develop skills that will help him succeed in any field.

While Cattanach has been solving technical problems in his courses, he has also been taking advantage of many other opportunities as an engineering undergraduate. He is co-president of the Nordic Ski Club at the University. He volunteers with College Mentors for Kids, a nonprofit organization that connects college mentors with at-risk youth. And he has spent a semester studying in London, England as part of the Notre Dame International program,