Get to Know Your New ME Faculty: All New Members

March 24, 2021
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Q&A with Raghu Bollapragada

2020 ME Faculty Portrait Bollapragada Raghu 7

Q: What is your home state or country?
A: Southern India

Q: How do you deal with Zoom fatigue?
A: Try to get up between meetings if you can. Even if there is overlap between meetings, try to ask for at least five minutes to get up and take a break.

Q: What have you been binging during quarantine?
A: Classic sitcoms, even re-watching a series that I’ve seen before.

Q: What are you looking forward to most in 2021?
A: I’m looking forward to working with the students that were not able to join our group in 2020. I also forward to getting to travel back to India to see my family.

Q: What would you say to prospective students who might be interested in Mechanical Engineering?
A: It’s always good to know what’s happening in the field right now. If you are unsure, take a look at the big picture and how each area of mechanical is evolving. Also try to talk to as many people you can.

Q: What’s the best part about being a Longhorn?
A: The food. With Austin being so multi-cultural, I can step out and get any cuisine that I want!

 

Q&A with Ann Majewicz Fey

2020 ME Faculty Portrait Fey Ann

Q: What is your home state or country?
A:  Mendota Heights, MN

Q: How do you deal with Zoom fatigue?
A: Take a break to get some fresh air and explore a new part of campus.

Q: What have you been binging during quarantine?
A: Curbside grocery pickup has been a game-changer, I can’t believe I never did that before 2020!

Q: What are you looking forward to most in 2021?
A: I'm looking forward to the grand opening of the north side of our renovated historic Anna Hiss Gym. AHG is the new home to Interdisciplinary Robotics Research and Fine Arts at UT and I can’t wait to move my lab into our new space!

Q: What would you say to prospective students who might be interested in Mechanical Engineering?
A: As someone who did both mechanical and electrical engineering, a ME degree is unique in the depth and breadth of the topics covered. It helps us approach the same problems with an incredibly diverse set of solutions, spanning mechatronic, fluidic, materials, and control-based options. I always tell my students that my ME degree is the one that really taught me to think differently.

Q: What’s the best part about being a Longhorn?
A: For me, it’s really about being welcomed and valued, and treating others in the same way. There’s a really positive culture at UT that I think is unique.

 

Q&A with Nick Fey

2020 ME Faculty Portrait Fey Nick

Q: What is your home state or country?
A: New Braunfels, TX

Q: How do you deal with Zoom fatigue?
A: Remember you don’t have to sit down for Zoom meetings!

Q: What have you been binging during quarantine?
A: Breakfast tacos and walking at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center

Q: What are you looking forward to most in 2021?
A: I’m excited to have people on campus again and the excitement that that brings. Also, I miss getting to have nonverbal communication with students.

Q: What would you say to prospective students looking to join Mechanical Engineering at UT?
A: To me, mechanical engineering has so much depth that other engineering disciplines might not have. These different skills can lead you further into your future career.

 

Q&A with Jamie Warner

Warner Jamie

Q: What is your home state or country?
A: Brisbane, Australia

Q: How do you deal with Zoom fatigue?
A: Try to utilize the times when you can be just listening, you don’t always have to have the camera pointed at you.

Q: What have you been binging during quarantine?
A: Running on the Lady Bird Lake Trail

Q: What are you looking forward to most in 2021?
A: The emergence of the electron microscope facility. Everything has been renovated to an extremely high standard, and all the new equipment is just beginning to arrive. So, I’m really excited to see all those things coming together to launch the new center.

Q: What would you say to prospective students who might be interested in Mechanical Engineering?
A: You always need to be looking for topics that you are passionate about, it shouldn’t feel like labor. Find your strengths and really do your research to find best path for you.

Q: What’s the best part about being a Longhorn?
A: The incredible campus, it truly is one of the best in the world. It’s one of the best I’ve seen in terms of organization, infrastructure, labs, classrooms, the vibe that has for students, and it’s close to downtown.

 

Q&A with Lei Zhou

Zhou Lei

Q: What is your home state or country?
A: China

Q: How do you deal with Zoom fatigue?
A: I try to come into the office when I can and interact with the students who are in the lab. Being on Zoom is like everyone being in the front row of the classroom so try and take advantage of that opportunity.

Q: What have you been binging during quarantine?
A: Science fiction novels

Q: What are you looking forward to most in 2021?
A: I’m excited to start travelling again and seeing colleagues at in person conference instead of over Zoom.

Q: What would you say to prospective students looking to join the UT family?
A: Austin is a tech center, so it makes it easier to connect research to industry application. The opportunities for employment are also much greater than at any other university, and specifically the Mechanical Engineering program has rich opportunities for first year students.

Q: What’s the best part about being a Longhorn?
A: I am very proud of our university and its vibrance. I’m proud that our university is one of the fastest growing not just in our department but also in national recognition.