Epp: Math is in her blood

- Maria Lironi

When Katherine Epp was a little girl, she thought she might want to be an accountant like her dad. After all, she’d always liked math.

Actually, perhaps “liked” is a bit of an understatement.
“When I was a kid my mom just could not keep me in those little Golden Book math books,” recalls Epp. “I completed two years of math in Grade 1 so I was always ahead of my class. By Grade 2 I was helping the third-grade students with their math. I competed in mathematics competitions in grades 11 and 12 and both years I also won medals in math. So part of the reason I was interested in computer science was that it was a math-related career.”

Now the 24-year-old Victoria native has distinguished herself again by not only graduating with an undergraduate degree from the Faculty of Engineering, but also by winning the Department of Computer Science Graduation Medal for having the highest graduating GPA in her class.

The medal is recognition for years of hard work. “Because I was home schooled I was used to setting goals for myself. I was always trying to be on the honour roll,” says Epp.

Initially at UVic I had thought that I would be an average student but when I saw that higher marks were achievable I started pushing myself to see what I could do. The first year my GPA was 8.9 and it was the same for the second year but in my third year I achieved a perfect 9.”

Epp’s determination eventually parlayed into a full-time job in her field. For the last four months she has been developing software for Victoria’s Latitude Geographics, a GIS company founded by UVic geography grad Steven Myhill-Jones.

“Although further education is not an immediate plan I am still considering it,” says Epp. “In the meantime I am enjoying my job at Latitude Geographics.”

As for her summer plans, Epp says she’ll be busy working, relaxing and spending time on some of her hobbies including cooking, hiking and reading.

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Keywords: epp, math, blood

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