Geek of the Week: Matthew Brandt

Many Mines students proudly identify themselves to the world as all-out nerds. Others, however, tend to shy away from even the mere label of “geek.” Nonetheless, the thirst for knowledge and the masochistic tendency to seek out academic challenge is a bond common to most all Mines students, including sophomore Matthew Brandt.

[Oredigger]: Why did you choose Mechanical Engineering?
[Brandt]: I wanted something general that’d give me some options when I graduate.

What has been your favorite class so far?
This semester, I’m liking Statics ’cause I don’t think it’s too challenging. It’s like Physics I all over again.

Are you a geek and why?
Not really. I don’t know any programming languages [and] I rarely play video games. I do love music, [but a] band geek is not a geek.

What do you do with your non-scholastic time?
Music. I’m in a couple different bands. My band We The Sheep just got an offer to go on a twenty-show tour.

What is your favorite thing about Mines?
The classes are challenging. [They] give you motivation to work hard and are equipping us for future careers.

Would you rather live in the Matrix and be able to upload any knowledge and/or ability directly into your brain or have to learn things the long way but live in the real world?
It’s easy to look at the Matrix and be like “oh, that’s awesome,” but [with] the real world, it’s fun to look at things and be like “oh, that’s a challenge” because that’s what makes [having] talents worth it.

What is your best nerd moment?
Getting to take Calc 2 here at Mines when I was a junior in high school. I also took Phys 2 with Santiago Gonzalez. That kid’s awesome.

If you could be dropped into any fictional universe, what would it be and why?
Well, I’m a huge fan of Lord of the Rings, so I’d like to go into Middle Earth, which probably means I’ll end up taking a vacation to New Zealand sometime.

Which is the better Halloween mascot: Jack Skellington: the Pumpkin King, or the Great Pumpkin (of Charlie Brown fame)?
The Charlie Brown one because why not?

What is your favorite book?
Lord of the Rings and I also like Skin by Ted Dekker.

Do you have any plans for the future?
Eventually, I’d like to get married and just work happily as an engineer and a musician. Nothing too specific. Just a typical comfortable life with a family. I don’t have any desire to produce the next cure for cancer or anything.

Do you have any advice for fellow Mines students?
Just enjoy the college experience and work hard. It’ll pay off in the long run. Mines is a tough school, but it’ll be worth it in the long run and when you get out of here, life won’t be as bad as if you [graduated with] a liberal arts degree.

Do you have a favorite quote?
“Monday is an awful way to spend 1/7th of your life.” –Steven Wright

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