About me

A brief introduction on my history

Ryan Zurrin

Father & Full Time Student in the Computer Sciences

I'm Berkshire County born and raised, from the wonderful City of Pittsfield Massachusetts where I recently graduated with a Associate in Science degree in computer science. I recently moved to Boston to pursue a Bachelor in Science degree, at the University of Massachusetts Boston. I've always loved computers, electronics, and just learning how things work and function. My curiosities have allowed me to explore many avenues and have granted me the opportunity to try out many things before finally settling with the Computer Sciences. I originally stared school as a fine arts major. This was because of my previous experience painting and drawing; it seemed to make sense for me to start there as being creative was one of my hobbies I wished to explore more. Then, I landed a position as a lab assistant in the Digital Commons at Berkshire Community College, and suddenly an old spark was rekindled within me; my early childhood passions for computers and software. Back in my younger days I gamed all the time and even built a gaming computer system when I was a teen. I can remember how much I loved upgrading hardware, installing games, exploring all the files and system configs and setting that made software work, it fascinated me then, and still does to this day.

So, I made the switch from art classes to computer science classes. Where now I hope to someday become a professional programmer and software developer/engineer. I am planning on using the skills I obtain to help others build their own ideas and dreams and I really feel using technology as a medium is one of the best ways to reach as many people as possible. With technology the possibilities are truly endless, especially if you’re able to fuse old ideas with the new technologies.
Like many before me, I am starting from the ground up. My success is built on the sweat and tears of my labor and hard work. My ambition and determination have carried me to this moment, to academia, and to want more for myself. I am now learning to do new and wondrous things; like building this web page for instance. Or learning about algorithms and how to use them, or how to implement data structures to simplify and abstract away complexity of certain tasks. Most importantly though, I am learning that to make the world a better place takes a team effort. No one person, no matter how hard they may try, has all the answers. But as a team working together, the possible solutions and ideas become almost endless.

We live in a world that is a fusing of minds and ideas all built up in the material space around us; with another whole world of ideas that now exists in a digital dimension where fast access to information and data rule supreme. It is this digital dimension I am so hungry to learn about. I am looking forward to learning about, devising new ideas, designing safer solutions, and even debugging software so that I can build fast and efficient programs and tools for professionals and individuals to use in their own practices. I am ready and willing to push through the coming challenges that await me, and I am ready to give this new life my all and to do the hard work that is required in building up a good solid foundation. A foundation from which I know that I can frame the rest of my future around.

Download Transcript, Associate in Science, CIS

Download Work Experience

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Skills & Experience

Over 15 years of House Painting and General Property Maintenance experience. I've worked for various employers and companies over the years, all of which helped in building my current skill-set and experience. Big take away is there is usually more than one way to get the same job done. I also maintained my own painting business for three years; ‘All About Painting’. A very valuable life experience. Also I have done a fair share of plumbing and carpentry work. The one thing I can say is, it doesn’t matter what path you decide to take in life, if you are going to succeed and be truly great at what you do, it is going to take a lot of hard work and dedication to achieve. Nothing good in life comes easy, nothing...

...and to that, these Skill Bars reflect the hard work I have put into becoming good at certain things. I will be updating this section to reflect my new skills as I begin to further my education in the Computer Sciences. So keep checking back! This list of skills will be growing and changing as I do. I truly believe the best way to learn anything in life is by rolling up your sleeves and digging in. Whether it be digging in the dirt or debugging dirty code, the only way to learn is to do!

On that note, the skill bar percentages are just picked based on how I feel I perform in these areas and are not decided based on any real scientific or substantial method that would validate their accuracy. It is meant more as a rough gauge of my skills based on my intuition about these subjects and not meant to be an absolute fact. I don't want anyone mislead. These values are represented as followed: 0% knows nothing up to 100% being a Jedi Master

HTML
CSS
JS
WordPress / CMS
C
C++
Python
Java


Access


Excel / Sheets


PowerPoint / Slides


Word / Docs / Forms


House Painting / Maintenance
Drawing / Painting
Woodworking
Living & Learning

Work Experience

My previous associations

June, 2020
Current

Freelance Web developer and designer

HighREZ Design Studioz, Owner

Building Business and event webpages. Helping customers starting with a free consultation and then taking them through every step as we put together requirements that bring to life the visions and ideas that make them unique and different. Using this as a launchpad we build up a brand on their new site using cutting edge frameworks and lightening fast CMS platforms I am able to achieve quick and responsive results in less time and money than it may take from a bigger less personal Web page marketing company. Using this and the new skills I've recently learned in school I decided to build a business model that was both doable and something I feel is greatly in demand. With this I welcome you to my new business landing page HighREZ Design Studioz.

June 28, 2021
August 28, 2021

Technology Intern

Norman Rockwell Museum

I managed a number of projects ranging from a massive inventory and audit of all computer and a audio/visual technology in Museum, to provisioning computers and mobile devices for digital experiences, wiring the Museum, beta-testing virtual exhibitions and setting up bug tracking software for it, and setting up and breaking down AV tech for complex hybrid public programs each week.

January 2018
2020

Work Study

IT Department (2019-2020), Computer Lab Assistant (2018-2019)

Working around computers and helping fix problems, with computers. These are great steppingstones and I was lucky to get in with the Lab and IT department at BCC. Being involved in the behind-the-scenes action has been a very enlightening experience. My responsibilities included things like imaging new computers, setting up and deploying computers for staff and students, helped to fix slow or not working machines and made sure the computers were in smooth and efficient running order. These were my basic tasks; other tasks included naming and adding computers to the schools domain, as well set up the default printers and any of the software being used, and had to make sure it was all registered and working.
In the Lab we made sure anyone needing any kind of help got it. Included such things as how to log into accounts, getting pdf's to print properly as well as setting the printer up to print for specific and unique tasks. A lot of very basic stuff to help out and keep things running smoothly.

July,2006
August, 2017

House Painting and Maintenance

Painter/Plumber/Landscaper

Most of my early adult hood and late teens was spent doing work that required a bit of physical dexterity. Everything from cleaning and installing big oil furnaces to weeding gardens and planting shrubbery. If there was something that needed to be fixed or required attention then I was there doing the job. I loved the fact that I could get payed to help people do the things that most people would not want to do. This was especially true of house painting. I painted houses more than anything else, even started my own business for a few years. During winter months when the painting got slow, I was able to get work for a Plumber where we would winterize homes and install gas furnaces as well as install bathroom and kitchen plumbing fixtures including any new plumbing that would be needed. We did everything from measuring and treading pipe, to cleaning, fluxing, soldering, all the way up to final testing that would be done on the plumbing and heating systems. It was all great experience and has really prepared me to apply a strong discipline within my academics.

January, 1996
June, 2001

Entry Level Jobs

Cashier / Stocker / Customer Service / Food Service / Tree Service

During the early years I started out working just like most average people did. I Had a couple jobs at the local mall where I was able to start gaining experience in various work-related tasks and more importantly, I was able to gain experience with interacting with people. I worked at hotdog stands and retail stores as well as supermarkets and hardware stores. My early experience was all across the board and I am very grateful for it now. Looking back at the lessons I learned, only now in retrospect is it clear that everything that has ever happened to me has brought me to this point now. And regardless of the mistakes made, I can honestly say I am grateful for it all as even in the mistakes were valuable lessons learned that can never be taken from me. My experience is diverse and unique and has built in mne character and strength. It is now, that I can finally see the bigger picture and start working towards a greater good bigger then myself, a greater good that ultimately helps everyone around me and possibly even humanity as a whole.

Education & Achievements

My life's greatest accomplishments outside of being a Dad.

Transferred to University of Massachusetts Boston
September 1st, 2021
Projected Graduation: Spring 2023

Started my Undergraduate Studies in Computer Science

Working towards receiving my degree of, Bachelor in Science

I am very excited to announce that I have been given an amazing opportunity to pursue my advanced degree in the field of Computer Science at the University of Massachusetts in Boston, MA. I am now living in Boston, surrounded by an amazing city filled with opportunity. There are far more internships and tech companies available in Boston and I plan on securing some experience in a professional setting before I finish my degree. I plan to work hard and use every chance available to grow and learn. This chapter of my life will be a key component in my coming success and the bedrock I build the rest of my future on. There is only one goal for me now, and that is to achieve my dream of becoming an experienced and working software engineer.

January, 2018
Graduated: Spring 2021

Computer Information Systems

Associates in Computer Information Systems (CS) / Certificate in Computer Programming - Technical

Having chosen the Computer Science path in the CIS degree program I have gained a much deeper and broader understanding of the way computer systems work and function. There was heavy emphasis on mathematics and the curriculum was designed to prepare students to move on to a baccalaureate institution for further study.

Update: Graduated with an Associates in Science in Computer Information Systems and a Certificate in Computer Programming

I will be transferring in the Fall 2021 to the University of Massachusetts Boston to finish up my studies and work towards receiving my Bachelor in Science in Computer Science. I am proud of my choice ultimately as it was the one that fit my budget. I am proud to say that I was accepted into some pretty amazing schools such as Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Worcester Polytechnic Institute, Wentworth Institute of Technology, to name a few. Though these schools would of been amazing to attend I unfortunately would of had too much unmet financial obligations. But as I like to say, it's not the school that makes the man, its the man that makes the school. So here I come UMass Boston, ready to learn and be that Beacon!

 
Current GPA: 3.689 [-.057 from last semester]
CIS Program Award
April 29th, 2021

Awarded the CIS Program Award for 2021

Departmental Awards are given each year to top students within each field of study

I was beyond honored and humbled to have been chosen as the award recipient for the 2021 Program award in the Computer Information Systems discipline. I have always had a fondness for computers and how they worked and even would spend my allowance money as a kid on books ranging from hardware repair to programming topics like c++. Now to be fully emerged within the field feels like I have truly found my way home. Computation and problem solving is just a built-in function of my brain for which now I have the skills to transfer this into working programs for computers! This truly is one of my life's biggest Joys, and to get recognition for all the hard work feels nothing short of amazing.

Honors Convocation
October 18, 2018

Academic Excellence in Collegiate Studies

Received awards for doing well in my studies

This was an amazing feeling to be recognized for doing a good job. I have never had a chance before now to experience anything like that and I was so amazed and excited to have had that opportunity. I also receive a Falconer Award in Fine Arts around this time as well. This was because I first started as a Fine Arts major before moving to CS.

Inducted on:
April, 2019

Phi Theta Kappa

Xi Alpha - Berkshire County Chapter

Due to outstanding grades, I was invited to join the PTK which is the 'International Honor society of American Community and Junior Colleges.' I was VP of Communications for the Xi Alpha chapter at BCC! 2019 semester. Our officer team took our chapter from a one star to a five-star chapter. Our Honors in action project was about the impacts of community policing and how it helps bring together the community and cops in a more trusting and meaningful manner. Part of this project was a big boot and shoe drive that was supported and sponsored by the local police departments Officer Derby, a leader on the front lines of community policing

STEM - 2019 - 2020
TRiO - 2018 - 2020
Robotics Club 2019

STEM Starter Academy / TRIo Program / Robotics Club

College Support Groups and Extracurricular Activities

Being actively involved with programs and activities that are there on campus is a good way to build up interpersonal skills and relationships. Having access to information, resources and to members in the technology fields is very helpful when learning about new and exciting things. I've been very lucky to be able to have so many great people supporting me and my continued education. Being a non-traditional student has made it a bit difficult at times when it comes to learning new complex ideas and just having a place to turn to get the help needed has been a key component in my successful restructuring.

Portfolio

Things I have made throughout my life

Click a button to open images

Personal Journal

The Log Book to my Life

Date Title Topic
6/4/2021 Java programs Java
6/4/2021 Data Structures and ADT's C++
8/4/2020 C++ II Programs, classes C++
7/13/2020 Berkshire Builders 623 Web Page
7/2/2020 Google Sheets, Team Tally Sheet Previous work
6/22/2020 Addressing the Times Current Events
12/25/2019 Simple C++ Programs C++
12/18/2019 Coffee/Cocoa Vending Machine Circuit design School Project
8/14/2019 Accountability Self Help
6/1/2019 Feeling Like a Fake Mental Health
5/12/2019 Understanding On a Deeper Level Education
5/11/2019 The Whole Design Phase Write Up Web Design

Where To Find Me

You can use the map below to find how far I am, simply sign-in or view larger map and using your current location get the distance to
University of Massachusetts Boston.

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