The College of Applied Science and Technology (CAST) at Illinois State University is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year! This series, CAST 50×50, is designed to highlight 50 faculty, staff, students, alumni, and organizations within CAST that make the college special. These notable people will tell you that every day in CAST is a great day to be a Redbird!

#CAST50 is running strong with track team member and CAST student Jalen Lewis.

What is your major, and what year are you at ISU?

I am an engineering technology major and a senior here at ISU.

Since you are a student-athlete, you have a busier schedule than most students. Can you give us an idea of what that is like?

When I’m in season during the spring semester I have practice at 7:30 a.m. and weights at 5:30 p.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays. I only have one class on these days so it’s pretty relaxing for me. Besides practice and weights I either do homework, study, or play video games with my teammates. Tuesday and Thursday are the days I am the busiest. I usually get up around 7:45 a.m., then have class from 9–12:15. After I finish class I have a break and I typically eat lunch at Linkins Dining Center. Those days, practice starts at 3:30 or 4 p.m. and usually lasts until 5:00 or 5:30. After practice is over I have my night class from 6 to 7:15 p.m. Once I am finished with class, I eat dinner at the dining center then go home to relax and finish homework. On the weekends, I have meets. During the indoor season I run the 400m dash and the 4x400m relay. During outdoor I do the 400H, 4x400m relay, and the 4x100m relay.

Jalen Lewis

When you aren’t running track, what can you be found doing? What is unique about you?

When I’m not running track in season I’m usually playing video games with my teammates or hanging out with other friends. I draw sometimes as well when I’m bored. In the off-season you can catch me playing basketball at the Rec. Basketball is actually my favorite sport, and I played all four years in high school. When I’m finished with track, I’ll be playing more regularly in the fall. One interesting thing about me is that I can dunk a basketball even though I’m under 6 feet tall.

Where is the most exciting place you have traveled to? Or where would you like to travel to in the future?

The most exciting place I traveled to during track was Texas for the NCAA prelims. The atmosphere was great because I got to compete against some Olympians. The next place I want to visit is Oregon because that where the NCAA finals are.

What is your favorite part about being an engineering technology major? Why did you choose this, and what are your ultimate career goals?

My favorite part about my major is the hands on aspect of it. I like working with PLC systems and robots. I chose this major because I like tinkering with anything I can get my hands on. I like to know how machines work. My ultimate career goal is to become a software engineer and create something innovative that will help the world.

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