Zachery Baumgardner, New Paris, Ohio
Major: Engineering Technology
I knew I chose the right major because I didn’t mind coming to school. Engineering technology is a pretty broad look at technical fields. It brings together leadership ability with hands-on experience, and it’s backed up by theoretical studies and statistics. You learn so much through it, really. The degree was designed for graduates to make an impact in local businesses. I’ve taken a computer programming class and learned about welding and metal casting. There’s even a class about how different cultures around the world affect the manufacturing process. It’s not an easy major, but it is very interesting and thought provoking. It makes me glad to work hard in it.
As a kid, I was always getting yelled at by my mom because I was taking stuff apart to find out how it worked. I loved being hands-on with mechanical projects. I liked messing with gadgets, so I knew I wanted to work in more of a hands-on field. I knew I chose the right major because I didn’t mind coming to school. I like learning about new materials and talking about interesting topics.
One of my favorite lab experiences was for MET 14300 (Materials and Processes). We were studying the different types of casting and processes, and we were able to go in the lab and produce a sand cast of a Purdue Medallion. Then we used melted aluminum to make our own medallions.
Making a difference
I’m still discovering everything I can do with my degree. I know I’d like to improve manufacturing processes. I might be a technical designer and design a new widget or product, something that helps improve already-made objects. I’m attracted to the automotive industry, so I could work on designing a more efficient set of wheel bearings or a more efficient engine. I also love the tooling industries.
The inside scoop
Through Purdue, I’ve had opportunities to meet a lot of awesome people. Without that connection, I’d never be able to take the in-depth tours of manufacturing plants. We were allowed to go further into the factories than public tours, and we got to meet with leaders of the companies. We’ve toured Indiana companies like Ahaus Tools in Richmond and Red Gold in Orestes.