The Michigan Aero Outreach Champions award recognizes exceptional achievement in spreading awareness of Aerospace Engineering with people and communities outside the department. Recipients have demonstrated a passion for such outreach and conducted projects with a wide impact in the communities in which they take place. Outreach efforts have additionally been conducted with a consideration of diversity, equity and inclusion. The awards are funded by François-Xavier Bagnoud Flight Vehicle Institute, with the selection process administered by the Aerospace Outreach Committee.
Felix Lui is a current Aerospace Engineering junior with minors in Mathematics, Music, and Computer Science. This summer he will be interning with GE Aviation, and hopes to attend grad school after undergrad. As outreach chair of AIAA here at Michigan, Felix Lui has overseen a litany of outreach efforts geared towards the local K-12 community. Such initiatives include Aerospace Day, a bi-annual outreach event to inspire young students about STEM and aerospace design, and a rotational mentorship program where AIAA volunteers members visit middle and high school students. These efforts are conducted with the goal of serving an inspiration to students not exposed to the possibility of aerospace careers in STEM and helping them realize pursuing such careers are within their grasp.
Founded in 2016, Women in Aeronautics and Astronautics is dedicated to improving diversity within the aerospace engineering industry, fostering a sense of community among women in fields related to aviation and space, and assisting members in building comprehensive networks and connections within the aerospace industry. In terms of outreach, WAA has been behind the inception of several programs aimed at cultivating younger students’ interest in aerospace. Through initiatives such as peer mentorship programs and hosting “STEM nights” at local high schools, WAA has done exemplary work bridging the gap between the Michigan Aerospace community and prospective aerospace students in the local K-12 community. Last fall, WAA hosted their first Dawn Seymour Women in Aerospace Conference, a two-day networking event to bring together Aerospace students, high school and college alike, dedicated to changing the culture of the industry and academia to be more inclusive for underrepresented minorities.
Once again, congratulations to Felix and WAA on their outstanding work and Outreach Champions Awards!