Joshua Hanson

electrical and computer ENGINEERING, B.S.


"I actually completed my internship at the place I currently work, Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona. I learned how to learn at CBU and I’ve relied on that skill to progress through my career."

Why did you choose your major? What interested you in this particular field of study?
Part of what got me to choose this major was the fact that my father is an engineer. My sister was also currently in the program and was telling me good things about it. I also have always favored math and science in school and knew how important those subjects are in engineering.

What did you like about being in this program at CBU?
I like how much the professors and faculty cared about your success. With CBU being a private school with smaller class sizes, it made it easier to get more one on one time with professors when needed. I always felt that the professors wanted me and my classmates to succeed above all else.

What did you think about your professors?
I always trusted their knowledge and experience and they were definitely people of God and of the utmost character.

Did you complete an internship?
I actually completed my internship at the place I currently work, Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona. It was definitely an interesting learning experience. I learned like many alumni before me that not everything you learn in college directly translates over into your work. I had to learn how to use many new software programs and systems that I had no exposure to in college. What I did take with me was the learning processes. Like Dr. Donaldson always talks about, I learned how to learn at CBU and I’ve relied on that skill to progress through my career. 

Did you participate in anything else at CBU?
I participated in athletics; particularly I was a swimmer at CBU. I came at the time we were transitioning from being an NAIA college to a NCAA D2 college. Being on the first national team for CBU was an awesome and memorable experience. Being able to succeed not just in the classroom but also in athletics was something that I will always appreciate about CBU. The support system we had from coaches, staff and faculty made it possible for me to pursue my engineering degree and swimming at an elite level.

How did you grow (spiritually, socially, educationally) while in this program at CBU?
Spiritually, I went into CBU already as a Christian. I appreciated the thought and effort the college put into keeping the focus of campus life on faith. Socially, I was usually very introverted coming into CBU. I grew in this by forming great friendships that will remain meaningful to me. Educationally, I learned so much about how to succeed in my work-life later on. I definitely think that CBU prepared me in the classroom for the important things in my career. Not only did they teach us the fundamentals of engineering but they also taught us how to communicate well. You can be the smartest person on the planet but if you can’t communicate your ideas, you won’t be an effective employee.

Did your major help you figure out your purpose?
I think it kept the true purpose of a Christian life always on my mind; which is to serve others for the Kingdom of God. Though it wasn’t always easy to see God in engineering, the professors there were able to show us how our work mattered. It’s not always exactly about what you’re doing, but how you’re doing it, what you’re doing it for. I believe that you can serve the Lord in any job by having a servant heart for those around you. If you go into any project with that mindset, I think that the end result will be something that will be beneficial to others.

What have you done since graduating?
I work at the Naval Surface Warfare Center Corona (NSWC Corona). I have not pursued graduate studies at the moment; however, my job does offer tuition assistance for partaking in graduate studies relevant to the job. Beside my job I have continued swimming, albeit not as much as I used to, and also picked up Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu.

How has your major and time at CBU prepared you for your life and career after college?
I hinted at this a bit in previous questions but my time at CBU and particularly my time at Gordon and Jill Bourns College of Engineering was that I learned how to learn. This particular skill is something I use every day at work as I learn about new systems and processes and things I use at home like learning how to cook for myself, pay bills, file taxes, all the stuff that they don’t go over in school.

Is there anything you learned at CBU that you still use in your professional life today?
At the Gordon and Jill Bourns College of Engineering, it was always stressed to us the importance of being able to communicate well, particularly through presentation. This is something that I definitely use in my professional life. Not only through communicating with my boss, team lead, and fellow employees but also with other members of the Navy from different installations and industry, in what we call the Test and Evaluation Community. Being able to communicate and present your ideas, conclusions or results, or even just what you worked on, is an essential skill in the workplace.

How are you making a difference in the world? How are you living your purpose?
Through my job I make a difference because a lot of the work we do at NSWC Corona helps keep our Navy safe. Also through my church, The Mission Redlands, I am an active participant in worship where I lead music often. My church is also a member of the Christian and Missionary Alliance and recently we sent a team to serve in Spain.

Would you recommend CBU to others?
Yes, I would recommend CBU to others. If you are a Christian, CBU is a great environment for continuing to develop your relationship with God, while also being a place of high academic standards. If you aren’t a Christian CBU still has a lot to offer you. Not only will you be exposed to aspects of faith that you may have not had previously, you also reap the benefits of having smaller classes and one-on-one time with professors. CBU is a place that cares for your success in academics and your spiritual life.


Learn More

B.S. in Electrical and Computer Engineering
College of Engineering


Related Alumni Stories