A Passion for Engineering

Gill Iradukunda sitting on a bench wearing a suit
  • Hometown: Kigali, Rwanda
  • Engineering Management

Name: Gill Iradukunda

Tell us about yourself. 
I moved to California right after High School and earned my Bachelors in Civil Engineering from California Baptist University in 2014. Professionally, I have been fortunate to work as an engineer on different real estate development projects around the world. My past projects ranged from subdivisions with hundreds of residential homes to industrial parks with office buildings. Currently, I live in Huntington Beach and enjoy working on hydrology studies for luxury homes in Los Angeles.

Why did you choose the Cornell Engineering Management program?
I chose the Cornell Engineering Management program because it perfectly fit with my career plan. I am certain that this program equips future leaders in engineering and other industries with tools they need to succeed. Other aspects  that contributed to my decision are Cornell's excellent reputation, welcoming community and great network of alumni.

When do you find time for your coursework?
I have created a strict daily schedule and assigned a few hours after dinner to my coursework. The fact that I have that flexibility is truly a blessing.

What class are you looking forward to?
I am looking forward to an elective about negotiation and contracts. 

What are you reading?
I recently started reading a book called “The Content Trap:  A Strategist's Guide to Digital Change” by Bharat Anand. It is a great read so far and I would recommend it to anyone, especially those who want to become innovators or disruptors in their industries. 

Who is your engineering hero and why?Gil with friends and surfboards at the beach
My Engineering hero is Elon Musk. He has contributed so much to the engineering community and to the world in general. I have been inspired by his life journey and work ethic.

What’s one thing about you that would surprise people?
Most people are surprised when they learn that in college I worked as a lifeguard and swimming coach.

What advice do you have for prospective students?
My advice for the prospective students is be open minded about all the resources that will be available to them through Cornell. I personally have enjoyed meeting all the brilliant people in my cohort and look forward to being on this journey with them.

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