Catherine Berrouet is an alumna of the Department of Mathematical Sciences, earning an M.S. in Applied Mathematics and Statistics, where she has researched biometric cryptography, and developed an algorithm for fingerprint authentication. Currently, Catherine is interested in topics of data science and pursuing a data engineering path.
What attracted you to apply for and attend FAU? How did you decide to pursue a degree in Mathematics at FAU?
I attended FAU because Florida is my home and the academic opportunities when studying cryptography at FAU is what peaked my interest. I graduated with a M.S. in Applied Math and Statistics with a specialization in biometric cryptography in December, 2021.
What do you like best about being at FAU?
What I like best about being at FAU is that I always felt supported. At FAU, there were key professors like Dr. Tuncer, Dr. Wang, Dr. Zhang, and Dr. Bai who helped me as a math student during office hours and outside class time. Being able to connect with students in a natural way is key, but most importantly was the opportunity to develop and nurture relationships with talented faculty throughout the learning process. There were also plenty of opportunities to apply for and receive scholarships from the Mathematics and Computer Science Departments, which is great for students like me who also needed financial support and help to prioritize academic duties.
How are you involved at FAU?
I have been involved in supportive professional organizations like the Association for Women in Mathematics (AWM) and the math club since my undergraduate experience. I am now the AWM FAU Student Chapter President and currently serving as the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Communication Chair for the Young Professionals - Region 3 section. My involvement in these student organizations has enhanced my skills in time management, setting realistic academic goals, and has furthered my professional network for future research interests in open topics/questions available for research.
What career are you interested in after you graduate?
I'm particularly open to gaining industry experience, formalizing my training and techniques, and learning as much as I can within IT and data science. I am excited to have the opportunity to currently work full time as a Data Analyst Intern with Assurant this summer. My long-term professional goals are to work as a full-time Cryptographer or a Data Architect.
Advice for students seeking a degree at FAU:
DON’T be afraid to ask questions and DO ask for help - with anything! (whether it is tutoring, financial burdens, or simple questions from class on academic topics covered, or needing counseling/mental therapy, etc.).
DO understand your resources.
Delineate a clear vision and take time to outline the goals for yourself to get there.