Devices were often taken apart, analyzed, and rebuilt by a young and curious Joseph Maxwellson. As a child, the prospective Alcorn State University graduate became fascinated by technology and how they powered commonly used gadgets.
“I have always loved the advent of technology,” said Maxwellson, a senior computer science major from Ghana. “I grew up taking apart radios, computer devices, and toys to understand how they worked and fixed them when they broke. My focus was on hardware until I discovered the role of software in making those devices function.”
Staying focused on his love for tech will earn Maxwellson a bachelor’s degree in computer science during Alcorn’s Commencement Exercise on Saturday. Maxwellson reflected on his journey and how more exposure to the field prepared him for his path.
“I got more exposed to computer science and its potential career paths during my first course registration period. It was not a tough decision to make since I have always had a knack for technology and engineering.
The process of understanding how machines work gives Maxwellson joy.
“I enjoy the ability to make and see things work. The result is evident, and the problems are solved not only by software but also by creativity, critical thinking, and possible failures. I am fascinated by how computer science allows me to create and develop the mental ability to handle problems in various fields from economics to biology, and even literature.”
Technology is more than just a career field or hobby for Maxwellson; it’s a way of life.
“I consider this path beyond a career; it is an ever-growing lifestyle that allows me to solve challenging problems and have the imagination to see the world through an entirely different lens. I can’t imagine dedicating my life to anything else.”
His love for technology inspires Maxwellson to do more than become an engineer. Giving back to others is also one of his goals. He hopes to pour his STEM knowledge into upcoming young people who don’t have access to modern technology.
“Only being a software engineer isn’t my goal. I am looking to progress from a junior software engineer to a team manager. I will also render career mentorship to people, further pursue an MBA with a focus on technology, and find an organization to introduce computer science and software engineering to middle and high school students in technology deprived areas around the world.”
When he is not tinkering with computers, Maxwellson focuses on his other passion, art. His artistic genius has been noticed during his undergraduate years. During his freshman year, he painted the likeness of Alcorn’s 19th President, Dr. Alfred Rankins Jr., and presented it to him during the 76th Biannual Honors Convocation Luncheon. During his sophomore year, his art was also featured during a Homecoming art show in the Oakland Memorial Chapel.
“I do pencil and charcoal drawings. I chose that because it comes naturally. It is an impulse and a challenge I cannot resist. It is fun, and I feel proud of every artwork I produce.”
Multifaceted is the perfect word to describe Maxwellson. He credits the engaging opportunities at Alcorn for making him a well-rounded individual.
“Alcorn presents a multitude of avenues to charter your interests. Be it First-Year Experience orientations, leadership and career seminars, multicultural festivals, talent shows, and event parties, there is something for everyone. I engaged myself in multicultural programs, helped pioneer the first Homecoming art exhibition, participated in community service and tutoring sessions, joined campus organizations, networked with people from diverse sectors and backgrounds, attended career fairs and conferences, and so much more.”
Alcorn has given Maxwellson some great moments that he will cherish for a lifetime.
“My time at Alcorn has been a stimulating, educational, professional, and social experience. It is a blessing to be with like-minded people who strive to provide the right environment for personal growth and development. Alcorn is a true family.”
Graduation is only the beginning for Maxwellson. He’s confident that earning a bachelor’s degree is the first of many significant accomplishments.
“It feels like I have come a long way. My life journey has just begun, and I will keep soaring until I make a total impact in the world.”