“I am aiming to engineer autonomous systems that incorporate robust mechanical design and intelligent controls to navigate uncertain or variable environments. Regardless of where this path takes me, I wish to carry forward the hard-working ethics and values instilled by Iowa State to engineer safe, reliable and high-quality systems.”
Hometown: Riverside, Iowa
Clubs and activities: Cardinal Space Mining Club, Grandma Mojo’s Moonshine Revival, ISSO Cultural Ambassador Program, Improv Comedy Club, Welch Hall Council
Valuable hands-on learning experience: I had a strong combination of internship/co-op and student org experiences during my undergrad that each were valuable. Getting involved in student orgs, especially project teams, gave me the opportunity to apply what I was learning in class while building my technical and interpersonal skills. These then carried over to internships and co-ops, where I gained valuable industry experience. For many students, I have observed that this professional experience then carries over into their work with student orgs when they return to campus, which then helps to strengthen the group. It’s an exciting cycle, and I believe it produces some very well-rounded engineers.
Most influential mentors: The first is Jim Heise, professor of practice in mechanical engineering and the faculty advisor for the Cardinal Space Mining Club. I’ve had the great opportunity to learn mechanical engineering, systems engineering, leadership skills, and much more from him through my involvement in the club and his courses. The second is my academic advisor, Alyssa Stafne, who has been incredibly helpful in guiding my studies and navigating various opportunities at ISU. Finally, Lie Tang, professor of agricultural and biosystems engineering, has been instrumental in helping me to take the next steps in my academic journey. Not only have I grown as an engineer from my involvement in his lab, I have grown to appreciate academic research and have therefore chosen to pursue graduate school.
Greatest accomplishment: I’ve have some great accomplishments with the Cardinal Space Mining Club. Being on a competitive robotics team yields many ups and downs, but the highs outweigh the lows. Each year that I’ve been at Iowa State, the team has steadily improved their competition performance, finishing 4th overall my freshman year and 2nd last year. If the trend continues, the team is on a great trajectory to have our best finish in a decade at this year’s competition. Each year provides an incredibly rewarding experience and a great sense of accomplishment with the completion of the new robotic system. I’ll add that I’ve made so many great memories at Iowa State – from just exploring campus to performing in the MU Great Hall with Grandma Mojos. There are memories big and small that will stay with me always.
Plans for after graduation: I’ll be heading to Oregon State University for my M.S. in robotics.
Making my mark on the world: I am aiming to engineer autonomous systems that incorporate robust mechanical design and intelligent controls to navigate uncertain or variable environments. Regardless of where this path takes me, I wish to carry forward the hard-working ethics and values instilled by Iowa State to engineer safe, reliable and high-quality systems.
Engineering like a Cyclone Engineer has got to come back to the practical experience that students get here. It’s difficult, maybe even impossible, for a student to go through the program without getting hands-on experience. Practical applications of theories taught in class allow students to gain crucial experience that carries over into whatever paths they may choose. And speaking of paths, I’ll add that a second major aspect of the Cyclone Engineering experience is the vast array of directions that a student can pursue throughout their undergrad. There are opportunities with clubs, research, internships and more that allow students to customize their experiences toward whatever career path they choose.