Awards and Accolades at Michigan Aerospace’s Homecoming Celebration

Students who you want to hire and an alum we are honored to know

Homecoming 2022 was an opportunity for alumni from across the country to join faculty, staff, students and the industry advisory board to hear the State of the Department (link) update and celebrate student and alumni awardees. Please help us recognize these exceptional students and alumni leader (and former industry advisory board chair).

They are:

2022 Aerospace Engineering Merit Award Recipient

Dr. Kevin Michaels

Dr. Kevin Michaels is currently the managing director of AeroDynamic Advisory, a specialty consulting firm focused on the global aerospace and aviation industries. He is an internationally recognized expert in manufacturing for leading national and international aviation and aerospace companies. His experience spans all industry segments, including technology assessment, cluster development, and strategic planning for air transport, business & general aviation, and the military.

Dr. Michaels has also found time to contribute to the College of Engineering and to the industry. He has chaired the Industry Advisory Board of the Aerospace Engineering department for the past eight years and is on the Board of Directors of Proponent, a leading aerospace distributor. In addition, he is a contributing columnist to Aviation Week & Space Technology and Forbes. Among his honors, Dr. Michaels is the recipient of the 2021 Gilbert W. Speed from the Award Aviation Week Network. The award honors outstanding leadership and collaboration across the global aerospace and defense supply chain. He is also the author of AeroDynamic: Inside the High Stakes Global Jetliner Ecosystem, a one-of-its-kind history of the commercial aerospace ecosystem that traces the transformation of the industry from 1990 to the present. The book won the Choice Outstanding Academic Title award in 2019. 

For his tireless dedication to Michigan Aerospace, we thank Kevin for his years of service to the IAB, the department, and our vision for the future! 

Centennial Scholarships

Adam Bertrand

Adam Bertrand is a junior from Boston, MA with an interest in all things relating to space and propulsion technologies

Tejarsh Singh

Tej is a sophomore studying aerospace engineering and is interested in the defense side of the industry. At Michigan, he is working on a project team to contribute towards the development of a satellite that will test the viability of electrodynamic tethers as a means of propulsion. He is also on a team that is strengthening the cybersecurity of a drone using model-based systems engineering principles. Outside of school he enjoys working out and is working towards being a personal trainer.

Michael Tigner Jonathan

Taylor and Adam 

Maddie Purvis

Maddie Purvis is a senior studying Aerospace Engineering with a minor in Space Science Engineering. She is interested in space engineering, and will be pursuing a career in satellite systems engineering after finishing her masters degree. She is currently the president of Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics, an organization she is very passionate about.

Oliver Van Note

Oliver Van Note is a sophomore majoring in Aerospace Engineering with a minor in Computer Science. At the University of Michigan, Oliver is a member of Michigan Aeronautical Science Association (MASA), American Institute of Aeronautics and Astronautics (AIAA), and the Men’s Glee Club. He is from Madison, Wisconsin and is proud to be a Michigan Wolverine. Oliver is truly grateful for the support from the Centennial Scholarship.

Niko Economos

Niko is from Arlington, Virginia, and a sophomore aerospace engineer at Michigan. He is minoring in computer science and the international minor for engineers, and has a passion for applying his engineering skills in an intercultural setting. Niko hopes to make a direct, positive impact on the lives of others through his work. He is a member of the M-SAAVE engineering project team, a vocal percussionist in DJs A cappella, and a member of the executive board in Mindful Michigan. In his free time, Niko enjoys photography, rollerblading, and practicing calisthenics.

Gabriella Chia

Gabriela, better known as Gaby, is a senior pursing her Bachelor’s in Aerospace Engineering, expecting to graduate Fall 2022 and shortly thereafter enter the industry. Her passion for aerospace started by watching commercial aviation accident documentaries, which sparked a desire to learn about aircraft designs and the improvements made throughout the decades. Gaby is a dedicated member of MACH, an airplane project team that competes in the annual AIAA Design-Build-Fly competition, and has served the past two years as the Structures Lead. She is also an Instructional Aide for AE205/ENGR100, which were her favorite classes during her undergraduate years, due to being able to physically build and test air vehicles (blimp and hovercraft). Outside of her studies, Gaby enjoys cooking, watching movies, and caring for her plants.

Ilyana Smith

Ilyana Smith is a sophomore in aerospace engineering. She hopes to one day work as flight director in NASA’s Mission Control. This summer, she had an internship at NASA working with the ground systems team for the CALIPSO satellite. She loves playing board games with her friends and reading.

John Pye

John Pye is a Junior studying Aerospace Engineering and Computer Engineering. He is currently working as a research assistant in Professor Dimitra Panagou’s DASC Lab researching safety-critical control and planning methods for teams of flying vehicles, and is President and Chief Engineer of the Michigan Autonomous Aerial Vehicles Team. In his free time, John enjoys hiking through the Arboretum and visiting the bookstores of Ann Arbor.

The Isaac, Vera, Gayle, Karen and Carol Bagley Endowed Aerospace Engineering Undergraduate Fund

Hunter Sagerer

Hunter is a Senior in Aerospace Engineering, planning on staying at the University of Michigan for his master’s degree in aerospace through the SUGS program. He is an active member in the aerospace community on campus, working as an Instructional Aide for the Aerosp x88 course series, and acting as Chief Engineer on MASA, the University’s amateur rocketry club. He has also been able to work for Northrop Grumman as a space systems engineering intern for the past two summers. Hunter is very grateful to have been selected for the Isaac, Vera, Gayle, Karen, and Carol Bagley Award, and he cannot wait to see where his studies in aerospace engineering take him.

Karen Bagley Albrecht Scholarship Fund Award

Jardine Allen

Jardine Allen is a sophomore studying aerospace engineering with an intended minor of robotics. Throughout her life, she has strived to challenge herself and learn in the process. She received a piano diploma in 2020, so she has letters after her name (ARSM, which stands for the Associated Royal Schools of Music). She is interested in space exploration, automation, and working with machine learning algorithms. She is on the eBoard for Black Students in Aerospace, an organization whose goal is to foster a welcoming environment for black students interested in aerospace and aviation. In her free time, she enjoys playing piano, swimming, and participating in outdoor activities.

Martin & Ann Sichel Award

Deniz Dost

Deniz Dost completed her BS in Mechanical Engineering in Bilkent University, in Ankara, Turkey. During her undergraduate studies she completed three internships; firstly in MAN Truck and Bus Austria focused on manufacture and assembly lines, then focusing on structural design and analysis in TAI (Turkish Aerospace Industries), and finally in Roketsan focused on acoustic analysis of a satellite launch vehicle. She then gained industry experience by working for a year in Roketsan in the micro satellite launch vehicle system design as a modeling and simulation engineer before starting her graduate studies in University of Michigan in August 2021. In her studies as a master’s student here, also as she has previously done on her job, she focuses on guidance, navigation and control of aerospace vehicles.

Forest Ruilson

Forest will graduate with his MSE in December of 2022 and plans to pursue a career in guidance, navigation, and control in the aerospace industry. He earned his BS in physics and engineering from Hope College in 2021.