Meet our Grad Students

 

Fall 2017 Cohort

 

Christian Bachman
Hometown Eldersburg, MD
Adviser: Elaine Oran

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I am fascinated with space and space travel, and want to make an impact on human exploration of space

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
UMD is close to home, has a good aerospace program, and offered me a graduate assistantship.

About Christian
I grew up in the small town of Eldersburg, Maryland in Carroll County. I decided to attend my Parents' alma mater of Purdue University for undergrad, getting bachelor's degrees in physics and math and a minor in astronomy. Midway through undergrad I decided I wanted to pursue aerospace engineering, and now, two years later, I am back in my home state getting a master's degree.

Hobbies
Basketball, frisbee, settlers of catan

What are your plans post-graduation?
Industry


Jordan Boehm
Hometown: Glen Burnie, MD
Adviser: Derek Paley

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
Long-term interest in the field as well as an interest in problem-solving.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Availability of funding, quality of advisors, and research topic options.

About Jordan
I come from Glen Burnie, just south of Baltimore. In high school I really enjoyed math and music, so I picked one to make a career out of. That choice eventually led me to the University of Maryland Clark School's Aerospace Engineering department. In my junior year of undergraduate study I took a controls course that got me interested in the discipline, and a year later decided I wanted to pursue graduate research on the topic. So now I'm back for at least two more years, and who knows what will be next. I still enjoy music, and spend my time playing when I can, but aerospace has become my career and my life.

Hobbies
Music, TV Shows/Movies, Reading, Video/Board Games, most things Sci-Fi/Fantasy

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
A combination of many factors. It helps that my parents are Trekkies though. We used to dedicatedly watch new episodes of Enterprise every week. Needless to say, science fiction had something to do with it. I also enjoy learning about technology and using it to solve difficult problems, so there are naturally many aspects of the field I find interesting. In particular I enjoy working with computers to solve engineering problems, so I gravitated towards work with guidance, navigation, and control topics.

What are your plans post-graduation?

Work in industry

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I like almost any pet animal, but especially dogs. I also enjoy eating junk food, playing/listening to jazz and rock music, and making jokes or just good conversation.


Jason Connolly
Hometown Pasadena, MD
Adviser: Stuart Laurence

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I am looking to expand my knowledge in hypersonic vehicles to aid in my current and future work at JHUAPL. I am also intending to pursue a professorship or a research position after graduating.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
UMD is close to my work allowing me to pursue a PhD while working full time at JHUAPL

About Jason
I grew up in Massachusetts but now live in Pasadena, MD. I received my B.S. in Aerospace Engineering from UMD in 2013 and my M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2015. I worked at Lockheed Martin in Marietta for one year and am currently a staff member at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab in Laurel, MD.

Hobbies
Rock climbing, soccer, basketball, hiking, camping, sports, outdoors, flying

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I was interested in rockets and airplanes at a young age and have continued to find them fascinating. The field is ever changing and the challenges are always exciting

What are your plans post-graduation?
Research, Professorship


Mickey T Da Silva
Hometown Thousand Oaks, CA
Adviser Stuart Laurence

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I've wanted to work on space technology since I was a small child and I decided that I would either approach it from the physics side, or an engineering perspective. I applied to graduate programs in both physics and Aerospace engineering and decided that the engineering path was the more practical of the two; I may even be able to somehow combine them. The school was recommended to me (particularly Dr. Stuart Laurence) by a respected friend and colleague. In addition, it's quite close to where I will also be working as an Aerospace Engineer. So it's a win-win from my perspective.

About Mickey  
Violinist, runner, physicist/chemist, now apparently an aerospace engineer; I spend the vast majority of my days working or learning with occasional bouts of exercise. I prefer running but biking or swimming aren't bad either. I like flying, long walks, and libraries; museums and gardens are wonderful and I sang in my high school and university choirs

Hobbies
Music (mostly classical), Running, Physics, Dungeons and Dragons

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I've wanted to work on space technology since I was a small child and I decided that I would either approach it from the physics side, or an engineering perspective. I applied to graduate programs in both physics and Aerospace engineering and decided that the engineering path was the more practical of the two; I may even be able to somehow combine them.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Possibly a master's in physics but certainly continued employment technology development

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I'm quite passionate about space development and even participated in a failed project to design and build a private rocket to reach space. The project supposedly only failed because of funding but considering it was me and two other guys designing and programming a rocket, it was quite a bit of fun.


Emily Fisler
Hometown:  CT
Adviser: Anubhav Datta

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Research interests of my advisor

About Emily
I grew up in Connecticut and went to undergrad at Northeastern University in Boston. I've been working for the last two years and am excited to start grad school at UMD!

Hobbies
Hiking, running, cooking, reading, board games, movies, flying

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work in industry/research


Eric Frizzell
Hometown: Portage, MI
Adviser: Ray Sedwick

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? 
Undergraduate research with Dr. Sedwick.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school? 
Location, facilities, faculty, Dr. Sedwick

Hobbies
Hiking, climbing, disc golf

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
To one day be involved with the commercial space industry.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Asteroid mining

What else should your fellow grad students know about you? 
I like chocolate!


Daniel Gomez
Hometown: Barranquilla, Columbia
Adviser: Derek Paley

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I'm interested in working in the aerospace industry The

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The facilities and the availability of funding.

About Daniel
I was born in Barranquilla, a warm coastal city with a lovely carnival in the north of Colombia. When I was 12, moved to Bogota, the capital, where I graduated from high school and then did my bachelor's in Mechanical Engineering and Physics. I love science and engineering which was what drove me to study those majors and to continue with a Masters. I am very close to my family and spend plenty of time with them. I am usually quiet but I love having interesting conversations, given the right topic

Hobbies
I like listening to podcasts, riding bike, walking on natural trails, and dancing salsa.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I am drawn by the challenge associated with aerospace engineering and I am interested in the future developments in this field.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work for a few years then decide if I want to come back to academia to do a PhD or continue working

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I hope to get to know new people who share similar interests and make friends, not only colleges, during my stay at U Maryland.


Seyhan Gul
Hometown Ankara, Turkey
Adviser Anubhav Datta

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I wanted to be a researcher since my first day at the university. To me, the idea of contributing to the development of technology sounds very exciting. I also want to learn as much as I could in my field of expertise. UMD is a great school in Aerospace Engineering, especially in rotorcrafts. I know that I can work with the best in the area and learn a lot at UMD.

About Seyhan
Seyhan Gul was born in Ankara, Turkey in 1991. He has studied in the same city and got his B.S. degree from the Aerospace Engineering Department at Middle East Technical University on February, 2014. During his senior year, he worked at Roketsan A.S., which develops and manufactures rockets and missiles in Turkey, as a co-op engineer. Right after graduation, he started his M.S. studies and also started to work in the Turkish Light Utility Helicopter Development Program at Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI) as a full time design engineer. He focused on flight simulations of the operational and limit maneuvers of the rotorcrafts and the resulting loads acting on the rotors and the airframe. He received his M.S. degree from the Aerospace Engineering Department at Middle East Technical University on December, 2016 and started his Ph.D. studies at University of Maryland on August, 2017.

Hobbies
Motorcycle riding, skiing, free diving, spearfishing, and camping.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Since I was a child, I was astonished by aircrafts and rotorcrafts. I wanted to be a pilot for a long time but in my high school years, I realized that it is even more interesting to learn all the engineering behind them. I am one of the lucky ones who had the chance to study in his dream department.

What are your plans post-graduation?
I would like to continue research and increase my knowledge in my area.


James King
Hometown: Baltimore
Adviser: Jewel Barlow

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I really enjoyed the research I participated in during my time as an undergraduate at UMD. I wanted to continue doing that kind of work while furthering my education. As an undergraduate at UMD, I had nothing but great experiences with the faculty and other students. I was able to see many of the research facilities around campus and am excited to have the opportunity to work directly with some of these facilities, such as the Glenn L. Martin Wind Tunnel.

About James
I grew up in Baltimore, where I attended Eastern Technical High School for its engineering program. I was able to gain experience through competitions involving robotics and design. I took an interest in robotics that led to an interest in autonomous systems in general, which is reflected by my research with the UMD UAS Test Site and Autonomous Vehicles Lab where I worked on research involving quadrotor and fixed-wing UAS. I also took interest in dynamics and controls during my time as an undergraduate, so I am very excited to be able to work on all of this for my graduate work.

Hobbies
Music, Volleyball, Hiking

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I’ve always been interested in engineering in general, especially autonomous systems. I’ve also always been fascinated by spacecraft and modern aircraft, so studying aerospace engineering allows me to learn what I’m interested in learning while working with systems that I find exciting.

What are your plans post-graduation?
I would like to able to work in research and development in industry, but I am still considering working towards a PhD.


Katie Krohmaly
Hometown: Alexandria, VA
Adviser: Roberto Celi

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I think that aerospace engineering is an exciting field that I would like to pursue a career in.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The University of Maryland has an outstanding program in aerospace engineering, and a collaboration with NASA, which is where I would like to pursue a career.

About Katie
I recently graduated from Christopher Newport University dual majoring in Applied Physics and Computational and Applied Mathematics with a concentration in Physics, Dynamics and Engineering and a minor in Mathematics. I interned at NASA GSFC in Greenbelt, MD and Jefferson Lab in Newport News, VA.

Hobbies
Fishing, scuba diving, traveling

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I think aerospace engineering is an exciting field that I would like to pursue a career in.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work at NASA Don't be shy.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I have an identical twin sister.


Tianyu Li
Hometown: China
Adviser: Olivier Bauchau

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
My career goal is to use mathematical methods to solve engineering problems. Aerospace engineering is a good choice to apply my methods. The graduate study makes my research more important. Prof. Bauchau's research interest matches well with mine

About Tianyu
I am Chinese boy. Before I come to UMD, I was a graduate student at Virginia Tech. I like sports, such as basketball and football. I am a mathematical guy and I may spend the whole day reading math papers or writing codes. But I also like traveling and fishing. I am very interested in delicious food. When I was at Virginia Tech, I am impressed with the BBQ, steak and lobster. I also like cooking fresh sea food

Hobbies
Delicious food

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Aerospace engineering is a good choice to apply my methods. I would like to develop more mathematical methods to solve engineering problems.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Faculty or Post-doc


Ravi Lumba
Hometown:  Houston
Adviser: Anubhav Datta

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I received my undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering, and I very much enjoyed most of the coursework. My undergraduate research was in Aerospace, and I really enjoyed the material and the research, which is the biggest reason why I decided to attend grad school for Aerospace Engineering. I was impressed by the schools commitment to rotorcraft. I liked the facilities and the professor I chose to work with (Dr. Datta). Finally, I think living close to Washington DC will be interesting.

About Ravi
I grew up in Houston and received my undergraduate degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin in 2017. I am very excited to start graduate school at Maryland! I am also excited to live in College Park, as I've spent almost all of my life in Texas.

Hobbies
Soccer, Raquetball, basically anything outdoors

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I got my undergraduate degree in aerospace and conducted research in the field. I really enjoyed the material. I also had a couple of internships in the field, which got me excited about real world applications.

What are your plans post-graduation?
I would like to stay in a research oriented position

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
Once you get to know me (or I get to know you) I will be possibly the goofiest person you'll meet.


Bernadine Passe
Hometown Flemington, NJ
Adviser James Baeder

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school? 

I enjoyed my studies here as an undergraduate in aerospace engineering. I also gained an interest in computational fluid dynamics through my internship experiences and want to pursue further knowledge in the field through a graduate degree. I really enjoyed my experience as an undergraduate and UMD is ranked very high in graduate aerospace engineering programs nationally. UMD became my home and I am thrilled it will stay as my home for awhile longer

About Bernadine
I was born and raised in Flemington, a small town in north-central New Jersey. As an undergraduate student at the University of Maryland, I conducted research with the Collective Dynamics and Control Laboratory as a part of my honors thesis. I also was an active member of Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics (WIAA), an organization to empower women in the aerospace engineering field. I am thrilled to continue my education here studying computational fluid dynamics with Dr. James Baeder.

Hobbies
Dancing, reading, working out, travelling

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?

I come from a family of engineers since my father pursued a master's degree in Electrical Engineering and my brother pursued a master's degree in Aerospace Engineering. Therefore, earning an advanced degree has always been on my radar. My father was a pilot and I often used to watch planes take off and land at the local airport, which I believe later helped spark my interest in Aerospace Engineering. I always enjoyed math and physics in school and aerospace engineering perfectly combines my love of aviation with those two disciplines.

What are your plans post-graduation?
To get a full-time job in the aerospace and defense industry.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I was a student in the Professional Training Program at the Princeton Ballet School and had the opportunity to become a professional dancer. I also received my first degree black belt from the Clinton Taekwondo Academy.


Mrinalgouda Patil
Hometown Hubli, Karnataka, INDIA
Adviser Anubhav Datta

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
UMD is well known for its Aerospace Engineering. The facilities here to do research are mind blowing, which motivates any student to pursue research. No Dr.

About Mrinalgouda
I am an incoming Doctoral student. Prior to this, I completed my Bachelors at IIT Bombay in Aerospace Engineering. My research interests include CFD, Scientific Computing. I have also worked in the field of Particle Methods for CFD especially the Smoothed Particle Hydrodynamics.

Hobbies
Playing TT, Cricket, Squash, Reading Novels

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I was passionate about Aerospace during my Bachelors. Well, my ultimate aim is to serve my country with my knowledge.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Working in a R&D lab


Rebecca Pierce
Hometown: Chicago, IL
Adviser: Norman Wereley

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I studied physics in undergrad and did research in astrophysics. While that was very cool and exciting, I wanted to do something with more of a practical bent, where I felt like I would have an impact on problems that people were facing. Aerospace engineering seemed like a good way to do that while still being in a field that was related to my background.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Funding and research.

About Rebecca
I've always been torn between the left and right sides of my brain. In college, I majored in both Physics and English. After graduating, I briefly worked in the arts industry before returning to astrophysics research. I had been interested in aerospace engineering for a long time, and I'm excited to finally be pursuing an aerospace graduate degree! When I'm not in the lab, I love playing sports (basically anything that doesn't involve a stick...no baseball, hockey or golf for me), playing music (I play clarinet and bass guitar), and reading/hearing a good story.

Hobbies
Music, hiking/camping, volleyball, rugby

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I studied physics in undergrad and did astrophysics research post-graduation. While that was awesome, I decided that I wanted to do something with more of a practical side. Aerospace engineering is a way to pursue that interest without completely leaving the field I've been working in. I'm excited to be working on hands-on research.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I used to play rugby!


Thomas Pitzel
Hometown: Alpharetta, GA
Adviser: Christopher Cadou

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I wanted to learn more, and felt that this was a good investment for my career

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The financial package offered and research opportunities

About Thomas
Originally from the suburbs of Atlanta, I grew up with a fairly well-rounded life focusing on doing well scholastically and athletically. I knew I wanted to major in Aerospace Engineering, and chose UMD for undergrad thanks to their location, reputation, and scholarships. During college I continued to be heavily involved in athletics, competing at an international level in climbing while still maintaining my studies and participating in undergraduate research. Looking ahead past graduation, I knew I still wanted to learn more and set myself up for a successful career, so I chose to pursue a Master's degree and once again Maryland offered the best combination of location, reputation, research opportunities, and financial support. I would like to think that I am an easy-going, sociable guy, but at the same time I am also quite competitive and spend a lot of time trying to improve myself for all pursuits. While I have a lot of time commitments in my life, I do enjoy meeting new people and going to as many different events as I can.

Hobbies
Climbing, Swimming, Intramural sports, video games

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Ever since I was a kid I thought being an astronaut was the coolest thing ever and read every space book I could find. Growing up I found that I was good at math, physics, related classes so I decided I could continue working in a field I was fascinated by and that I was good at.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work somewhere on engine development


Collin Schirf
Hometown: Waldorf, MD
Adviser: Jewel Barlow

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I want to pursue a career in CFD modelling, and a graduate degree is highly beneficial in this field. I attended the University for my Undergraduate Degree and enjoyed the experience. Additionally, attending allowed me to complete my research with Dr. Barlow.

About Collin
I was born and raised in Waldorf, Maryland where I attended North Point High School. My interest in engineering was fostered by the engineering magnet program that I participated in during my time at North Point, and I was accepted to the University of Maryland to continue pursuing this interest. In my sophomore year, I met Dr. Barlow and became a research assistant at the Glenn L. Martin Wind Tunnel. I was fortunate enough to receive a SMART scholarship from the Department of Defense which has allowed me to continue my studies at Maryland.

Hobbies
Playing music and video games, fishing, bicycling

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I was always fascinated by planes and a middle school project about the planes of World War Two piqued my interest in their design and engineering. An engineering magnet program at my high school reaffirmed my decision, and I've been on this path ever since.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work for the Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center 


Girguis Sedky
Hometown: Cairo, Egypt
Adviser: Anya Jones

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Because of my passion to the field and research Received the best financial offer and the research aligns more closely with my interests than the research in the other institutions

About Girguis  
Girguis was born in Cairo, Egypt, and raised in both Cairo and Abu Dhabi, UAE. He moved to the U.S. to continue his higher education. He received his Bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering with a minor in Aerospace Engineering from LSU and then moved to the University of Maryland to pursue his Masters of Science in Aerospace Engineering. He took a special interest in research during his two years of work in LSU’s combustion lab as an undergraduate where he mainly focused his efforts on designing experimental devices and automating experiments. His specific interest in Aerodynamics developed through both his fluid mechanics coursework and his involvement in the LSU Hyperloop team as the Aerodynamics lead. He designed the aerodynamic shell of the vehicle and led its building effort.

Hobbies
Outside of school, Girguis enjoys playing sport like squash and ping pong, jogging, traveling, and hiking. Ping Pong, Squash, Basketball, camping, hiking

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I chose to specialize in Aerodynamics because of my interest in thermal fluids and in acquiring a position in Aerodynamics design and optimization in the future.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Obtain my Phd or a design position in the industry


Abhishek Shastry
Hometown: Ranchi, Jharkhand, India
Adviser: Anubhav Datta

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
To increase my knowledge and experience in the field .

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
A friendly guide, presence of good friends nearby and of course the excellent research facilities of the university

About Abhishek 
I would describe myself as an extremely weird(by normal standards), easy going kid, who spends most of his time inside his mind. Trusting someone is extremely difficult for me but even if you are a stranger and need help, I will help as much as I can. I easily get bored that's why I cannot do a single work for a long time, especially if it does not calls for creativity. But if the work at hand is interesting enough and worth doing, I will do it even if I was ill or on my death bed. I love adventure sports or more specifically the thrill of facing death at close  :D

Hobbies
reading books, a long bike ride, adventure sports

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Because I love working at the frontier of science. If not aerospace I would have been a physicist. I have loved knowing about and working on planes, spacecrafts, cosmos since childhood. I feel some sort of internal connection with these things. In fact, one of my greatest desire is to become an astronaut someday.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Maybe start my own company

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
Well, I love chocolates. :D


Jackson Shannon
Hometown: Calvert County, MD
Adviser: Christine Hartzell

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I did my undergrad in aerospace engineering and loved it!

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?

Funding!!!

About Jackson
I was born and raised in Southern Maryland, less than 5 miles from the Chesapeake Bay. I received my Bachelor's in Aerospace Engineering from UMD, and I am very excited to stay here for my graduate work. I've had internships with United Launch Alliance, NASA Goddard, and NAVAIR, and my long term goal is to pursue a career in the launch vehicle industry.

Hobbies
Golf, Weightlifting, Fishing

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
What's cooler than rocket science?

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work for an Aerospace Company

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I am a die-hard Terps fan. I will try to be at every football and basketball game possible.


Matthew Stone
Hometown: Belton, Missouri
Adviser: David Akin

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I am interested in spacesuit design, and broader aerospace concepts as a whole. My employer (Navair) has agreed to fund my graduate degree, so long as it's in Aerospace Engineering.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Location / proximity to work and home.

About Matthew
I work for Navair as a Mechanical/Aerospace Engineer, down at Pax River. I work in aircraft Human Systems, however my real interest is in spacesuit design. My eventual goal is to work for NASA and apply to the astronaut program. My wife and I both graduated from Missouri S&T. I graduated in 2014 with degrees in Mechanical and Aerospace engineering, and we both now work for Navair at Pax River. I love to work on classic cars in my spare time, and hit up the odd car show on a weekend too. I also love to go flying on a nice day. I'm finishing up my private pilots license, and I plan to start some aerobatic training next.

Hobbies
Classic cars, flying, Tae Kwon Do, Scuba Diving

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I am fascinated by spacecraft and space systems, and "humans in space".

What are your plans post-graduation?
Finish my work payback period while applying to the astronaut program and seeking out further spacecraft/human systems work.


James Sutherland-Foggio
Hometown: Florham Park, NJ
Adviser: Anubhav Datta

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering? What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I discovered my love of aerospace engineering during my undergrad mechanical engineering program. I decided to pursue a degree to become an industry leader in research and design After visiting UMD, I was overwhelmed by both the quality of lab and fabrication facilities as well as the friendliness of the faculty and other grad students

About James
I just graduated from Villanova University in May with a BS in Mechanical Engineering and Math. Born the middle of three boys, I grew up fairly laid back, being a mediator between arguments, and just going with the flow of things. I also grew up loving cats, my parents currently have four. In high school, I played tennis and soccer. Except I quit tennis after freshman year after never winning a game with my doubles partner (every match was 0-6, 0-6). I did play soccer all four years and loved it. I played a little intramural in college, but nothing much. I don’t follow soccer much and really only watch football. Even though I’m from North Jersey and the Jets practice facility is in my hometown, I’m a Philadelphia Eagles fan. I like to listen to classic, alt, and indie rock. My favorite band and first concert was The Black Keys. Feel free to say hi and stop to talk to me when you see me!

Hobbies
Frisbee, Soccer, Scuba diving

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
When I was little, I wanted to be an architect but later realized my artistic abilities never progressed beyond age 7. Applying to colleges, mechanical engineering seemed like the right choice due to its broad range and I’d have a chance to build a mini battle bot. As I continued my studies, I realized my true passion for aerospace. It stemmed from the model rockets and RC planes I flew as a kid, but aerospace also offers fascinating challenges to study. I wanted to further develop and specialize my skills before heading into the industry so I decided to get my graduate degree.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work in industry

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I'm not sure what to say. If you want to know more about me, come ask. I don't bite I promise.

Fall 2016 Cohort

 

Hulya BilerHULYA BILER
Hometown: Antalya, Turkey
Faculty adviser: Anya Jones

Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in Antalya, Turkey. My interest in Aeronautics started in high school. The thing that attracts me the most about aeronautics was the nature itself. I moved to Istanbul to study Aeronautical Engineering in Istanbul Technical University. I got a Fulbright scholarship to complete my MS in UMD. I am interested in Flapping wing applications, Gust studies and Low Reynolds number flows. Along with the studies, i enjoy swimming, abstract art and chess.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
The thing that attracts me the most about aeronautics was the nature itself. What are your plans post-graduation? PhD

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I would like to improve my knowledge in aerospace

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I was studying Gust characterization for flapping wing applications and Anya Jones was studying the same topic.

Hobbies
Swimming, art


 

JOHN JULIANO
Hometown: Monrovia, MD
Faculty adviser: Kenneth Yu

Tell us about yourself.
I attended the University of Maryland for my undergraduate work. While there I did my honors thesis on measuring heat transfer using fiber optic temperature probes.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
To continue my research in heat tranfer at AEDC tunnel 9

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Proximity to my research

Hobbies: Sports

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
It interests me and I knew little about it

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work at AEDC tunnel 9

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I follow nearly all sports and spend nearly all of my free time w a thing sports in some regard


Caitlin KingCAITLIN KING
Hometown: Bothell, WA
Faculty adviser: Norman Wereley

Tell us about yourself.
I grew up near Seattle and got my undergraduate degree in mechanical engineering at George Fox University. Most of my free time has been spent with my high school's FIRST Robotics team, which I helped start during my junior year of high school. Despite going to college in Oregon, I frequently drove north for the weekend to help with the competitions. I've picked up video editing to stay involved with my team during the rest of the year and have found that I really enjoy that. Besides that, I really enjoy rock climbing and watching the Seahawks play.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I've always loved space and recently realized that my love of mechanical structures could pair nicely together. My overly specific long-term goal is to become a structural engineer on the rockets that send astronauts to Mars. While I know that this plan may change, it's helping me go in a good direction until I find something I want more.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Besides the great program and reputation, everyone I've interacted with at UMD has been so helpful and friendly. While the full funding was the main deciding factor for me, I was pleased to find that UMD was my first choice anyway.

Hobbies: Rock climbing, video editing, FIRST Robotics

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I grew up loving astronomy but didn't really think about aerospace engineering as a career until my junior year of college. I applied for a NASA scholarship and part of the application was writing an essay about what my future application plans were. I made up a story about how I was going to get my master's degree in aerospace engineering and then work for NASA. It turned out to be a pretty convincing essay because it not only won me the scholarship, but it also helped me realize that I had an awesome plan that I should definitely pursue.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Become a structural engineer for NASA

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I've wanted to get a pet rabbit for over a year now. I love playing with fluffy animals, despite being somewhat allergic to them.


Jinseong LeeJINSEONG LEE
Hometown: South Korea
Faculty adviser: Derek Paley

Tell us about yourself.
I love space, sky and sea to explore somewhere while doing outdoor activities with people. I worked in a Marine of Corps of the Republic of Korea and experienced SCUBA and Skydiving, and swimming/boating for 2 mines to survive in the sea during military service. Those experiences became good asset for me to grow up as a space engineer. I worked at space agency before studying in the UK for my MS degree. Based on our strength in physical and mental health, I wish to put our best enthusiasm on research and activities during our PhD and make good team work all with you.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
3 Keywords in the UMD: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center Jeong H. Kim (Korean) Neutral Buoyancy lan for aerospace research

Hobbies: Cycling, Jogging, triathron, soccer, bowling, singing

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I love space and spacecraft to explore beyond our habitat. It is to know where I came from and who we are now. Aerospace engineering has the methods to solve those questions for me. What are your plans post-graduation? National aerospace agency or company

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
If you need someone to study or play with, or feel lonely, feel free to call me. I will be your best friend for you even when you drink.


Mario MondalMARIO MONDAL
Hometown: Silver Spring, MD
Faculty adviser: Inderjit Chopra

Tell us about yourself.
I am from Bangladesh, a small country in south Asia. I grew up there until I was 20. Then, I came to the United States with my family to chase a bigger dream. I completed my B.Sc. in Aerospace Engineering at UMD. Now, I would like to earn my M.S. in the same major. I have a great passion for the flying vehicles because they are so cool! I am an active member of AIAA and American Helicopter Society (AHS). I am also involved as a Youth Secretary at Bangladesh Christian Association, Inc. in Washington DC Metropolitan area. I go to church every Sunday. I love to help people. I believe that if I help people, I will be helped too.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I earned my B.Sc. degree in Aerospace Engineering, and I would like to widen my knowledge and continue my education in the same field of study.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
I was a student at UMD as an undergrad. UMD is second home to me, and I don't want to leave my home. Did you visit our campus before making your decision?

Hobbies: Digital Photography, Travelling, Kayaking, Playing Cricket

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
It is the coolest and most rigorous engineering among all, and I feel proud to introduce myself as an aerospace engineer outside.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Work full-time. I would like to work for US Government.

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I am married, and I watch so many movies. I love to spend time with my family and friends.


Wanyi NgWANYI NG
Hometown: Flagstaff, AZ
Faculty adviser: Anubhav Datta

Tell us about yourself.
I grew up in Flagstaff, AZ, the nation’s first Dark Sky City and home of the discovery of Pluto. I attended public school before receiving a scholarship to attend Duke University, where I studied mechanical engineering. Throughout high school and college, I continually trained in ballet and messed around in modern, jazz, and latin as well. I spent my summers attending dance programs, working on a civil engineering project in Brazil, and interning at NASA Goddard. I am working with Professor Anubhav Datta on electric aviation. I am currently dancing part-time with DC Contemporary Dance Theatre and will be a NASA Pathways Intern in the spring of 2017.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Growing up with interest in space and physics, I eventually found my way to mechanical engineering as a broad major within which I could explore different applications. A variety of factors led me to focus on aerospace – among them, an internship at NASA with exciting projects and inspiring people, as well as a hope that space industry technology can lead also advancements in renewable energy. What are your plans post-graduation? Working at Goddard and continuing to dance in the DC area

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
As a mechanical engineering major, I found aerospace to be an interesting field of application. After interning at NASA Goddard, I decided I wanted to gain more knowledge in aerospace engineering and learn from a long-term independent research project.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The UMD aerospace engineering program seems well established and connected in both research and industry, and I received a very good funding package for a masters program. I got along well with the other aerospace graduate students when I visited campus, who all gave positive evaluations of the program.

Hobbies: Dance, hiking, rock climbing, stargazing, singing, figuring out easy and tasty meals to cook

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
My list of favorite places nearby includes Great Falls, the rooftops of DC apartments, and the Silver Spring farmer’s market – I’m looking for places to add to that. I am a proud alumna of Duke, and I tented for basketball tickets, but that doesn’t mean I’m obsessed with beating UMD at basketball. If you have a pet, apologies in advance if I pay more attention to the pet than to you.


Laura PaquinLAURA PAQUIN
Hometown: Baltimore, MD
Faculty adviser: Stuart Laurence

Tell us about yourself.
I was born and raised in The City That Reads until I moved to South Bend, IN, to study engineering at the Univ. of Notre Dame. After spending one summer dropping dishes, I terminated my career as a waitress and since then have held internships for GE Aviation and Northrop Grumman in Maryland, Florida, and California. I am excited to have returned to the Crab Cake Capital of the World and to begin my graduate studies.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
In high school I was deeply interested in two things: physics and track & field. At one point during my 8 seasons of jumping, my AP physics teacher sent me documents outlining the physics of high jump--how my CG would move under the bar as I flew above--and I have since retained a fascination with aerodynamics.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
I had a significant experience doing undergrad research, loved participating in AIAA conferences, and was encouraged to pursue a PhD by my professors. I have also held 3 internships and generally found myself disenchanted by industry work.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Mostly my adviser. I got to visit him in the fall before beginning grad school apps. He then also facilitated me visiting once more in the spring after I was accepted. Out of all the potential advisers I met during grad school visits, he was the only one who met with each of his advisees individually weekly and showed a genuine interest in their progress as well as that of his students from class. We discussed possible projects for me, and he encouraged me to explore topics that I had not touched in my undergrad research. I was also impressed by the grad students I met. They congregated to answer my questions, gave me their candid advice, and even let me participate in setting up an experiment with them. Finally, the partnership with Tunnel 9 will allow me to obtain data in a world-class facility while pursuing my degree.

Hobbies: Running, skiing, sailing, ultimate frisbee, pulling pranks

What are your plans post-graduation?
Probably to take a nap.

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I once ran through a final exam (Mechanics) in a gorilla suit. I like to celebrate obscure holidays. For example, happy National Waffle Iron Day.


Atif SalahudeenATIF SALAHUDEEN
Hometown: Lawrenceville, NJ
Faculty adviser: James Baeder

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
To become a more qualified candidate for jobs and to expand skillset

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The Combined B.S./M.S. program

Hobbies: Board games, hiking, movies

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I was really interested in aircraft and spacecraft as a kid.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Get a job


Kyung-Hoon ShinKYUNG-HOON SHIN
Hometown: Seoul, Korea
Faculty adviser: Ken Yu

Tell us about yourself.
I came here with my family, my wife and 23 month son. I am very interested in high speed air breathing propulsion system. I love to hang out with my colleagues. So when you have fun, please let me in.

Hobbies: Watching Movies

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I am deeply interest in propulsion system, since my elementary school years. Thus, I chose aerospace engineering department when I entered university.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
During my work experience in aerospace engineering fields, I felt some shortage to solve some problems. I believe graduate degree will help me solve problems in the future.

What are your plans post-graduation?

Back to work


ZACHARY SMITH
Hometown: Crownsville, MD
Faculty adviser: Anya Jones

Tell us about yourself.
I did my undergrad studies at RPI in Troy, NY dual majoring in Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering. I conducted undergraduate research with Dr. Farhan Gandhi, a UMD alumn. I am from Maryland and excited to be in an area I know. I am always looking to get outside and hike, ski, or rock climb. Very excited for the next step of my career here at UMD and to get to know everyone!

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
To reach the career levels I want to obtain I need a master's degree. I also love research and being involved with it, so I wanted to continue with this.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
It was the best offer I received, it is close to home, I wanted to experience a larger university after going to a smaller undergrad university, and it is the best program.

Hobbies: Hiking, skiing

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
I have always wanted to fly. Not just in a plane, but like a bird. As I was starting to plan my college career in high school, 2 things happened that set me off. The first; Ironman. The movie came out and I was hooked. Why can't we fly like that? Why can't I step outside and blast over to another state or country. This was something I wanted to obtain. The second event was that I went hang-gliding for the first time. The feeling of freedom in the sky was amazing and something I wanted to more easily achieve and pursue.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Industry

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I am always up to meet new people, go explore the area, or go on adventures. So if you're doing something fun for the weekend, make sure I get that invite.


ERIC SOLOMON
Hometown: Woodcliff Lake, NJ
Faculty adviser: Inderjit Chopra

Tell us about yourself.
I went to UMD CP for 4 years.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
The program is great and my research lab is great.

Hobbies: Musicianship, outdoor sports, exploring local music

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
It is really cool and useful.

What are your plans post-graduation?
Start a company

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
Everybody chill.


ALEX WALTSAlex Walts

Hometown: Rochester, NY
Faculty adviser: Christine Hartzell

Tell us about yourself.
My name is Alex, and I am originally from Rochester, NY. I recently graduated from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University - Daytona Beach with a Bachelor of Science degree in Aerospace Engineering, and am now at UMD pursuing a Master’s degree in the same field. I absolutely love outer space, and have every intention of applying to become an astronaut in my future. I have completed three internships with NASA, two of which were at Goddard Space Flight Center right here in Greenbelt from August 2013 to May 2014 where I was with the observational cosmology department, and the third was at Kennedy Space Center over the summer of 2016 where I was working on an ISRU component for the next Mars lander. I’m currently trying to earn my private pilot certificate, and hope to continue that effort in the local area. I’m very excited to be a part of the UMD community and the aerospace engineering department and love learning more about the aerospace field. Go Terps!

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
Several reasons: 1) I loved my undergraduate program and would like to pursue more in depth knowledge of the subject through 400-700 level courses 2) I've always wanted to undertake an aerospace research project to see a different side to academic study 3) I would like to be more marketable in the industry as an engineer with a graduate degree

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Again several reasons: 1) Financial incentive through a university GTA 2) The opportunity to possibly conduct my graduate research at NASA-GSFC where I previously completed two internships 3) Out of the schools I was admitted to, UMD is the closest to home (Rochester, NY). This is a nice bonus after having lived all the way down in Florida for four years. 4) Due to being at GSFC for a while, I'm already familiar with the area, and slightly familiar with the school 5) Dr. Hartzell's research, and all the work done in the UMD AE department, really closely aligns with what I'd like to study.

Hobbies: Flying, freemasonry, baseball, motorsports including NASCAR, waterskiing, music, any outdoor activity, target shooting

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
From a young age I was always a hands on learner by building with anything I could find. As I got older and saw how awesome the shuttle program was, I wanted a way to combine mechanical design/engineering with space, and thus went into aerospace engineering.

What are your plans post-graduation?
I'd like to work in the space industry either with NASA or with a supporting contractor. Wouldn't rule out a lot of private companies out there either.

Don't be shy. What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
Fun fact: I love any kind of water-sport, especially water-skiing and I have even dabbled in barefoot water-skiing. I also play a few brass instruments so if anyone wants to do a jazz band/brass band session, just let me know.


Xiao ZhangXIAO ZHANG
Hometown: China
Faculty adviser: Elaine Oran

Tell us about yourself.
I was born in the eastern part of China and lived there for more than 20 years. 2 years ago I just started my new life in the U.S. in the U of Michigan after I got my undergraduate education in Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering in Tianjin University, China. My primary interest is computational fluid dynamics since undergrad and still would be numerical analysis in UMD with my supervisor Dr. Oran.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?
Both naval and aerospace engineering are pretty cool to me and here is the right place for me to achieve more in dynamics and computing.

Why did you decide to pursue a graduate degree in aerospace engineering?
It's where I see my future as an expert in numerical analysis.

What made you choose UMD for graduate school?
Good advisors. Great location.

Hobbies: Reading, learning Japanese, painting, swimming

What are your plans post-graduation?
Still planning. 

Don't be shy.  What else should your fellow grad students know about you?
I am so interested in painting on canvas recently and I would like to take some art classes nearby on weekends if there is any. Any clues or advices would be appreciated! Join me if you like

 

Fall 2015 Cohort

JEREMY CHANG
Hometown: Bel Air
Hobbies: TV, Driving, Cosplay, Gaming, and reading

Bio: My name is Jeremy, I'm an Aerospace Engineering grad student, and I love making things, both for science and in my free time. I love watching TV, and going out to explore new places, which I look forward to doing around UMD!

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
It's where I want to be! It's where I feel I can make a difference.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Do research in Academia or for NASA/APL, etc

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
I like to work hard at things, and while I may get off track from time to time, I'll make sure the task at hand gets done. I always enjoy a chance to wind down and go somewhere for fun.

 


ALEX COSTENOBLE
Hometown
: Port Washington, NY
Hobbies: Formula SAE, Humans v. Zombies

Bio:I was born and raised just outside New York City, on Long Island. For as long as I can remember, I’ve been fascinated by all kinds of mechanical systems—trains, cars, construction equipment, but especially planes. In fact, some of my earliest memories involve running out onto my front lawn to watch Concorde on its approach to Kennedy Airport. So I knew early on that I wanted to go into engineering, and soon decided on aerospace engineering. I attended UMD for my B.S., and having taken a year off, I’m now coming back for my M.S.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?            
I always knew I wanted to go into engineering, and aerospace is a good field for turning cutting-edge technology into deployed, mass-market systems, which will actually have an effect on people's day to day lives.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
To get a job in the aerospace industry

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
I'm partial to Pokemon, although I haven't played that much competitively. But I'm trying to get a team going.

 


DANIEL ESCOBAR
Hometown: Towson, MD
Hobbies: Scuba Diving, Golf, Ice Hockey, & Traveling

Bio: I'm from Towson, MD. I went to Cornell University for my B.S. I studied Mechanical Engineering and am excited to focus more on rotorcraft dynamics for graduate school as I pursue my M.S. Besides school I like playing sports and doing other outside activities. I also have my student pilots and hope to receive my private pilot's license.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
I've always been interested in flight and would really like to work in the rotorcraft field. I thoroughly enjoyed my studies as an undergrad, especially in the field of dynamics, and wish to apply my knowledge to the aerospace field. I had a research project on Martian rotorcraft drones and this experience convinced me to pursue the field.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Find a job! I plan to work in the private sector or start my own company.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
Many people find this hard to believe, but I don't like chocolate.


BRIAN FREE
Hometown: Chesapeake City, MD
Hobbies: Reading, driving, juggling, music, longboarding, dogs, exercise, programming, Jackie Chan, Friday Night Lights.

Bio: I am staying at University of Maryland to earn my PhD in flight dynamics and controls. Throughout my undergraduate career, I discovered I had a proclivity for mathematics, programming, and robotics. Working in Dr. Paley's lab will be a great way to mate these interests with my degree in aerospace engineering.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
I checked the wrong box!

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Cannot predict now

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
My brain is a random word generator. For example: dog couch tall dog film dog


GABRIEL GOODWIN
Hometown: Baltimore

Bio: I was born and raised in Baltimore and attended Owings Mills High School. I received my BS in mechanical engineering from UMD in 2011 and then joined FM Global as a field engineer. After working for FM for three years, I decided to return to UMD for graduate school to pursue my passion for aerospace engineering. I try and spend as much as my free time outdoors as possible- hiking, backpacking, camping, and just hanging out. I love to read, listen to music, and watch movies.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
Space exploration has been an area of great interest for me since I can remember.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Work for a company involved in space exploration.

 


BUMSEOK LEE
Hometown: Busan, South Korea
Hobbies: Reading, Swimming, Mountain Climbing, Travelling

Bio: I was born in South Korea, and I earned my B.S. and M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST). After completing my master's degree, I worked as a missile aerodynamic engineer for four years at LIG Nex1, the largest missile manufacturer in Korea. I participated in several missile R&D projects related to the man-portable anti-tank missiles and helicopter-launched missiles. During my work, I was able to visit several research facilities in the United States and Canada, and these inspired me to pursue a PhD study in the United States.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?           
When I was in my second year of high school, I watched the news about the successful development of South Korea’s first anti-ship missile, the SSM-700K Sea Star. The footage of the missile being tested on the news completely enthralled me, and since that time I envisioned my career as an aerospace engineer.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
I hope to continue my path as a research professional in universities or institutions.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
I have two goals for my life. One is to read the Peloponnesian War written by Thucydides in ancient Greek, and the other one is to succeed in triathlon. If somebody is interested in pursuing the above goals with me, please let me know. I will buy beer!


PETER OAS
Hometown: Laurel, MD

Bio: In one sentence, I am an introverted Christian who likes adventure and learning new things. I enjoy being out in nature, I am a vegan, and I will argue with people about almost anything, as long as they reciprocate.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
Helicopters fascinate me.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
The future is a blank canvas.

What else should your fellow grad students know about you?     
I own a cat/kitten named Webster. I think service is really important, so that's why I'm currently building houses with Habitat for Humanity in Kansas City. I don't do sports.


LUCAS PRATT
Hometown: Columbia, New Jersey
Hobbies: Running, Fiddling with computers

Bios: I grew up in rural New Jersey (which, despite stereotypes, does exist) on 108 acres of horse stables and pastures with numerous animals. After high school, I attended Yale University for my undergraduate degree in Chemistry, with a research focus on catalysts and organometallic chemistry. After graduation, I joined the Science Policy Fellowship program at the IDA Science and Technology Policy Institute in Washington, D.C., where I focused on issues in the space sector, in part leading to my application to Maryland.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
I want to specialize in the problems of space transportation, in particular so that I can work on advanced propulsion systems such as beamed propulsion, solar and electric sails, and nuclear-electric. I view faster and more efficient travel as incredibly important in the long-term, with a number of creative avenues to pursue and (relatively) few people pursuing them.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
PhD Program


TYLER SINOTTE

Hometown: Fond du Lac, WI

Bio: I grew up in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin. I attended the University of Wisconsin-Madison for my undergrad, where I studied Engineering Mechanics with a second major in Astrophysics. I graduated this last December (2014) and have been working at Mercury Marine as a structural analyst for the past eight months.

Hobbies: Soccer, basketball, board games, and reading.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?         
I have always wanted to be an engineer. After taking classes on aerodynamics, flight dynamics, and rocket propulsion, I knew that aerospace engineering was the field that I wanted to pursue. In addition, my astrophysics courses have motivated me to work on engineering projects that help enhance our understanding of space.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Work in Industry at an aerospace company.


THOMAS WHALEN
Hometown: Quincy, MA
Hobbies: Lacrosse, fishing, hiking, video games, reading.

Bio: After graduating from Dartmouth College with a B.A. in physics, I worked at the Chandra X-Ray Center in Cambridge, MA. Now I plan on pursuing research in hypersonics while student in UMD's aerospace engineering program.

Why did you choose aerospace engineering as your field of study?       
I wanted to join a field with practical applications that also utilizes the physics foundation that I gained as an undergraduate. Specifically, I was interested in the design of hypersonic vehicles, and aerospace engineering provides a viable method of achieving that goal.

What are your plans post-graduation?  
Academia or defense firm.