University of Alberta
My name is Sophie Sigfstead and I am an undergraduate student researcher at the University of Alberta, currently studying math and computational science. Prior to studying at the University of Alberta, I studied engineering at the University of Victoria. I am a strong candidate for this position, with unique experiences and a track record of excellence.
I have demonstrated academic success, having achieved a cumulative GPA of 3.9/4.0 and obtained numerous academic awards, which cumulatively total over 50,000$, and also include being named to the University of Victoria Dean’s List on two occasions.
In addition to my academic successes, I have been recognized for community based efforts, earning the University of Victoria W. R. Gordon Scholarship in 2020, for outstanding contribution to student life at the university. I also have a wealth of relevant connections to student groups, as I am deeply involved in the U of A’s student community, as well as other independent student-run initiatives. For example, I am currently serving as the Outreach Coordinator and Computer Science Advisor for Ask An Undergrad Canada, a nationwide initiative that provides high schools students with free post-secondary planning resources and mentorship.
I also have varied work experience in the field. I worked in IT Support at the University of Victoria for 2 years, where I resolved over 6500 technical issues relating to computer software and hardware. During my time in this position, I also organized a campus-wide cybersecurity education campaign, which generated a high level of engagement. I have also completed two internships at the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC), where I worked as a Data Analyst in the Cash Services department. During my time at RBC, I spearheaded numerous successful initiatives (including the development of an advanced SQL application) and contributed to cash forecasting solutions involving XGBoost modeling. I also volunteered as a mentor for Canadians Learning Code Canada, teaching women and non-binary individuals coding fundamentals. My work at the company was very well-received, as I was recognized as a top performer in both terms.
Currently, my main interests pertain to applications of AI to social issues – particularly law, medicine and biology. I am currently working as a research intern at the University of Alberta Faculty of Law, where I am performing data analysis relating to health misinformation data, and I am finalizing plans to further explore these interests this summer. Long term, I wish to pursue a career combining medicine and technology.
Given my ambition and projected future involvement, I am very motivated to improve outcomes for the academic community. If elected as an undergraduate or women’s representative, I have no doubt I would be able to advocate powerfully on behalf of my contingent. As outlined above, I am well-equipped to do so, as I can rely on my skills, connections and past experiences to provide a diverse and enthusiastic perspective to the committee. I hope the electorate sees similarly – thank you so much for your consideration!