Calvin's Letter 01/16/16

Hi Mr. Sarkar,
  It's Calvin MacDonald. I wanted to let you know that what I learned in AP CompSci is benefiting me in surprising ways. Recently I have been doing work in game design, and shortly I plan to open my own independent studio. Based on my knowledge of art and music, game design seemed like an art I would find it easy to get into, but I was nervous about the huge step to using an industry standard program like Unreal Engine 4.
  Much to my surprise, it turned out that Unreal Engine runs on an object-oriented program system, which is very similar to Java. My year of Java experience pretty much eliminated the learning curve, and I was able to dive right into the more advanced aspects of Unreal Engine without having to spend ages struggling with the basics. Thanks a lot for making the class available to me my senior year, and I wanted to let you and your students know that even without using java, I'm using a lot of what you taught me now.
Your student,
Calvin MacDonald

Calvin is studying Music & Technology at Mercy College.

Abhi's Letter 11/22/15

Hello Mr. Sarkar,
  I hope things are well! I don't mean to be writing so out of the blue, but I thought you'd be proud to know that I was one of the very few students in my Intro to CSE (Computer Science and Engineering) class at Uconn Storrs to achieve a perfect score on the midterm. I can almost entirely attribute my success in this class to all that I learned in yours, so I wanted to once again extend a big thank you for all that you taught us.
  The class I'm taking teaches programming in Matlab, which I believe was originally written with mostly C and some Java. So, while the language isn't precisely the same, I'm able to use a lot of the same problem-solving skills and logical thinking which I developed learning Java. Even though I, personally, was far from having mastered the content after leaving your class, I left feeling infinitely more prepared, and excited, to take this course (and more advanced ones in the future).
  In summary, please feel free to add me to the list of alumni with an overbearingly strong support and positive review of your class.
With Regards,
Abhi Patni

Abhi is studying Electrical Engineering at Uconn Storrs.

Paul's Letter 1/22/16

Dear Mr. Sarkar,
  I’ve been taking an Intro to Engineering course at UConn, and my final assignment in this class is to write a letter of appreciation… To a teacher who has helped influence my decision to become an engineering student, and who has helped to spark my interest in the field that I’m studying. As soon as I heard about this assignment, I knew that I wanted to write this letter to you.
First off, I’d just like to say thank you for helping me end up where I did. You truly have had more impact on my choice of major in college than any other teacher I’ve ever had.
  The influence that you’ve had on my decision started off four years ago, during my freshman year of high school. It was this time in my life that I felt like I should start thinking about what general area I wanted to study. Throughout my entire life, I’ve always leaned towards studying engineering, but it was your Algebra II class that really made me solidify this decision. Algebra II was by far my favorite class during my freshman year. I was always excited to come to your class, because you always made learning fun. The overall way that you taught not only helped me learn a huge amount, but it always made me want to learn more, too. You also taught in many unique ways that I had never seen before. One of my favorites of these ways was the ticket system, which I thought was fun, and looking back on it, it definitely made me more attentive and engaged during class.
  Two years later, you had more impact on my choice of major than I ever could have imagined. This was during my junior year, in AP Computer Science, and I can completely accredit my decision to study Computer Science and Engineering in college to this. Going into our computer science class, I really had no idea what to expect from the course. I had no programming experience and I didn’t even know what computer science really was. I honestly only enrolled in the class because you suggested it to me, and because of the great experience that I had with you as a teacher previously. As the class got started, I would quickly find that, to date, your AP Computer Science class was the best course that I’ve ever taken, in any subject. Once again, you taught in a way that made learning extremely fun for me. I learned so much in this class, and I was always so excited to learn more. The way that you taught was probably my favorite style of teaching that I’ve ever come across, and it really helped me retain all of the material that you were teaching. I liked how you always had us type the code that you showed us, which felt like a very effective way for me to learn to code. I also really enjoyed the labs in this class, which were always the highlight of my week; the assignments and projects that you gave us for homework, which felt more like something that I was doing for fun than a homework assignment; as well as the feedback that you gave on graded work, which always helped me understand how to improve.
  You’ve also helped to influence my decision to major in computer science outside of this class. You helped me get a summer internship, where I would be able to gain professional coding experience. You got our school involved in the GE Competition, and chose me to compete on the team, where I would be able to experience a whole new style of computer science. You even put together a computer science independent study, so that I would be able to continue my education in computer science at Westhill.
  I won’t ever be able to thank you enough for all that you’ve done for me, and for helping me develop the enjoyment for computer science that I’m sure will stay with me for the rest of my life. I really do owe the major that I’ve chosen to study in college to your teaching, and I doubt that I would have chosen to take this path through my future if it weren’t for you. So, once again, thank you for all of the support, advice, assistance, and knowledge that you’ve given me over the past few years, and thank you for helping me develop the enthusiasm and enjoyment for computer science that I have today. I wouldn’t be where I am now if it weren’t for you, and I am very happy with where I ended up.
Yours truly,
Paul Blum

Paul is studying Computer Science at Uconn Storrs.