Soaring to Great Heights
Brianna “Bri” Hobert, a self-taught artist and fencer, is majoring in mechanical engineering. She hopes to focus on aviation in her career and is training to be a pilot. In fact, she specifically chose New York Tech because of the aerospace engineering concentration.
Hobert was also attracted to the structured curriculum and the diversity that New York Tech provides. “The professors here helped me with my engineering education, and I managed to create a career path from hard work and personal achievements as well,” she says.
Her interest in aviation and aerospace and her knowledge of art and 3-D modeling helped her with her school projects. “I started learning how to do this in 2018, where I cannibalized video-game engines, dissected 3-D models, and learned C code in my free time to better understand how things worked in the virtual world,” she says. In 2021, these skills helped her land an internship at the NASA Glenn Research Center. She was part of a team working on the High Efficiency Megawatt Motor (HEMM), one of the devices being developed in the agency’s Electrified Aircraft Propulsion project, which is aimed at making electrified aircraft a reality. “My self-taught art and design skills allowed me to create the 3-D model [of the HEMM], its renderings, and manage the backend processes,” she says. These skills, “combined with the technical skills I’ve learned at New York Tech, helped me complete this internship.”
In her Machine Design class, she and her classmates were tasked with calculating the diameter of a shaft that was inside of a machine. “Professor Chee-Meng Lee was a wonderful mentor and exemplary professor,” she says, “I have gained invaluable knowledge from him.” Hobert also loved learning about computer-aided design with Laboratory Engineer David Fanning. “Seeing everything gradually come together was very rewarding.”
Hobert also competed on a team with other New York Tech students in the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) Mask Innovation Challenge, helping create a sustainable, biodegradable face mask, and made it to the semi-finals.
In addition to learning a lot about the scope of engineering at New York Tech, Hobert’s Communications for Technical Professions class was the most useful to her so far. “I’ve learned so much from the course, and it undoubtedly helped me get my internships,” she says. While taking the class Literary Journalism in the 1960s, her professor, Kevin Horton, inspired her to join the staff of The Campus Slate, New York Tech’s student newspaper for the Long Island campus. “He had told me that that I had decent creative writing skills and was able to convince me to hop on board the team,” says Hobert. “I am glad that I did.”
Her main advice for New York Tech students is: “Don’t let anybody tell you that you cannot do something. You can do anything if you hunker down and take the time to learn it. Also, make sure to add ‘+C’ to the end of your integrals.”