College of Engineering, Applied Science & Technology
SHAUN McBRIDE Class of 2012
His dream: To make his story as cool as he wants it to be
The number of YouTube subscribers "Shonduras" has as of July 2017
From Facebook to Snapchat to Forbes' 30 under 30
He refers to himself as a professional “fun-haver,” but Weber State technical sales alumnus Shaun McBride is much more than that. The social media mogul known as “Shonduras” was recently named to the Forbes’ 30 Under 30 list for marketing and advertising, not long before he signed a lucrative content creation deal with Viacom.
McBride, who got his start selling jewelry on Facebook, has amassed millions of followers on social media, where he is most popular on YouTube and Snapchat. Now he works with brands such as Nickelodeon, MTV and Taco Bell on their social media strategies. Most recently, McBride purchased an e-sports team
and launched a company called Spacestation Gaming.
“Shonduras” has remained close to Weber State, building a new home in Syracuse, Utah. In March 2017, he returned to Weber State to speak to professional sales students in the Shepherd Union Wildcat Theater.
Bolstering STEM Education
Building a habitat to sustain life on Mars, coding video games and designing robots for competition are just a few of the ways WSU’s College of Engineering, Applied Science & Technology (EAST) helps young learners explore the world.
Fun and rewarding science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs target different interests, needs and ages. The most intensive experience is the pre-freshman program known as WSU PREP. High-achieving seventh- through ninth-graders from the Davis, Ogden and Weber school districts spend seven weeks during three summers at the university receiving accelerated STEM instruction. In addition to classes, the 200 participants are mentored by college students. They also visit museums and business, and experience a taste of college life.
The FIRST Robotics programs attract nearly 3,500 statewide. As Utah’s FIRST affiliate partner, Weber State faculty, staff and students help direct three competitions: FIRST LEGO League for fourth- through eighth-graders, FIRST Tech Challenge for seventh- through 12th-graders, and FIRST LEGO League Jr., for kindergarteners through fourth-graders. Teams identify and analyze a current problem and present a solution. They also design, build and program robots for competition, while learning to be cooperative and gracious team members.
To encourage young women to investigate STEM opportunities and careers, EAST hosts multiple events, including Parent/Daughter Engineering Day, SheTech and Girls Go Digital.
Thanks to the help of generous donors and volunteers, the outreach programs are offered free or for low cost.
Using Computer Science to Change the World
WSU professors Brian Rague and Richard Fry use their computer science expertise to make positive changes in the world, online and offline. During the 2016-17 academic year, both were honored for their work.
Rague, professor and chair of the School of Computing, received the John S. Hinckley Fellow Award, which honors faculty who demonstrate a commitment to teaching, scholarship and service.
Rague was instrumental in establishing WSU programs such as the Computer Literacy Center, where students learn to improve their computer skills; the Computer Science Simulation Lab, where students research augmented and virtual reality systems; and the Master of Science in Computer Engineering, the College of Engineering, Applied Science & Technology’s first graduate degree.
In addition, Rague works to increase participation of underrepresented populations in computer science, such as women and minorities.
Fry, a computer science associate professor, received the John A. Lindquist Award, which WSU’s Center for Community Engaged Learning presents to faculty who provide students with an excellent education while also addressing community needs.
Fry has led a number of international service-learning trips. He and his students helped underprivileged students in Thailand learn English with a custom-built app. They digitized medical records for a hospital in Ghana. They also created a web application that tracks, documents and archives the impact that the lack of available health services has on children living in rural New Zealand.
Fry and his students also have worked on software programs benefitting Catholic Community Services and Runway Ruby’s, a restaurant at Hill Air Force Base that employs adults with special needs.