Cooperative experience proves priceless for WSU grad
Nov 11, 2011 3:00 PM | Print
Fourteen years ago when Michael Arruda was in middle school, he played a video game called Jane's Advanced Tactical Fighter.
Jane's is a respected guide and resource for aviation and defense gurus.
From then on, Arruda was hooked on avionics.
"What I honestly tell people is that a video game got me started in airplanes," he said.
As a student at Wichita State University, Arruda took his love of airplanes and transformed it into his education, earning a master's in aerospace engineering in 2009.
While at WSU, Arruda took advantage of the opportunity to get on-the-job experience through the Cooperative Education and Work Based Learning program.
Wichita State's cooperative education program offers temporary job placement through the curriculum for current degree-bound students.
Through co-op experience, Arruda earned an internship at Hawker Beechcraft.
"I started in the Model 4000 Environmental Control Systems group," he said. "It gave me a ride on an airplane for a test flight, the ability to write FAA compliance reports, and it got my feet wet in the certification world."
Co-op was key to his success
Cooperative education was a key player in gaining Arruda's footing and experience among the working class.
"It gave me a better starting position," he said. "I received Engineer II, instead of Engineer I in my first job out of college."
After more than two years with cooperative education, Arruda is now doing what he had set out to do.
"I get to fashion new aircraft projects and use the equations I learned in my engineering classes," he said. "I also work and network with a very large group of aerospace professionals, thanks to my co-op experience."
Arruda studied six years at Wichita State. As an added bonus while on campus, he met his wife, Emily, who also graduated with an aerospace engineering degree.
Maybe Arruda's next performance manual won't be for another video game, but instead for parenting. These two engineers are expecting their first child in early 2012.
For more information on Wichita State University's Office of Cooperative Education and Work-Based Learning, call (316) 978-3688 or visit http://www.wichita.edu/thisis/offices/coop/.
Rhatigan Renewal revives campus life
WSU dedicates building named for former president
Innovative splint developed by WSU researchers
Students feel at home in Shocker Hall
WSU expansion will support job growth, innovation
Wichita State Musical Theater presents 'The Spitfire Grill'
Economic Outlook Conference, Oct. 9
History Department special presentation
Workshop to prepare students for ACT
Nursing student workshop to be held at WSU
WSU hosting 'Writing Now, Reading Now' series
WSU to host ACT Math Workshop
David Cabela to speak at WSU forum
Constitution Day activity at WSU
The Elliott School of Communication turns 25
Kansas Council for Economic Education receives grant
Ray to discuss photography at reception
Students, community welcome at WSU outdoor movie
AQR holiday travel forecast: Book early
CEDBR now offers indicators in optimal format
WSU finance students study the market in real time
Tree planting honors WSU's KBOR anniversary
WSU School of Nursing one of 100 schools chosen
Claycomb named as WSU Ventures director
Innovation helps WSU School of Nursing reach students