Autumn & AeroLab

Happy October everyone! I am currently blogging from Daytona Beach, Florida and Fall is officially here. Today was a brisk 85 degrees, yes that’s FL experiencing a cold front. With October, and being about half way through to the Fall semester, that calls for – you guessed it… midterms! The time has come when we are 50% to finals and testing, presentations, lab reports, and quizzes have officially begun. Recently I’ve been embracing the autumnal vibes as much as possible whilst waiting for the weather to develop a chill, by listening to some fun new study playlists on Spotify as background music while I do homework or study.

Additionally, I’ve changed the background on my computer to fully embrace October. Changing my phone and laptop backgrounds to incorporate more autumn colors help me feel cozy and happy. My favorite website to get fun backgrounds for my computer every month is The Every Girl.

Also, I’ve begun my fall cleaning! Since my residence hall room is fairly tiny this year, it is easy for my living space to become quickly cluttered, which makes it all the more important to keep things tidy and fresh. This includes the time of the year when I’m switching to more cozy scents for my oil diffuser and in my body washes. My current favorites for fresh and cozy vibes are oudh, rose, and vanilla! I’ve also recently bought some new coffee for the particularly early and chilly mornings with more nutty and warm flavors (hello Made Pecan and Hazelnut!), and have been trying to embrace seasonal eating – incorporating all the fresh fall vegetables and (the more unhealthy version of seasonal eating that feeds the soul) pumpkin spice coffee flavors, cinnamon apple teas, and salted caramel protein powders.

While I try to (pumpkin) spice up my life for fall, I still have a fairly solid school and work routine which sometimes makes it a bit difficult to add variation to, thus most of my celebrating for my favorite season has been small, yet meaningful changes. As previously noted, adding more fun, fall, festive flavors into my diet gives me small bits of joy even when I’m busy.

On the more academic side, my Aerospace Structures and Instrumentation Lab is going well thus far! We’ve completed experiments for a Honeycomb Compression Test, Straingage Installation, Instrumented Torsion, and Aluminum and Glass and Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (GFRP and CFRP) Tensile Testing and only have 4 more lab sessions until the end of the semester, meaning we’re officially half way!!

Picture from my Aerospace Structures and Instrumentation Lab of a strain gage installation on an aluminum alloy bar in a compression test.
Picture from my Aerospace Structures and Instrumentation Lab of a Hydraulic Wedge Grip used in tensile testing for aluminum alloy, GFRP, and CFRP samples.

I hope everyone is enjoying the weather getting colder and the joys of being half way through the semester. Running in the 70 degree weather is my favorite, so I am very excited to be able to not only prepare for my end of November PT test in the perfect climate conditions, but also get ready for my Thanksgiving morning 5K race with my family. Wishing you a focused, productive, and restful midterm season! Will report back soon folks, keep on keeping on!

Flight Research Center & Flight Simulator Lab

Happy September everyone! I’m currently blogging from Daytona Beach, FL, where I’m here to walk you through a day-in-the life of an ERAU student. Set the scene: I am a senior in Aerospace Engineering on an Aeronautics track, with a minor in Arabic Studies and Military Science. My typical day includes waking up at about 0500 in the morning to go to PT for Air Force ROTC and usually doesn’t conclude until the late evening with a variety of meetings or Duty Shifts for my Resident Advisor position, followed by homework and studying.

The “in-between” is usually packed with classes, errands, working out, homework, and studying. I had my first Quiz of the Fall 2021 semester yesterday in Aircraft Preliminary Design and I have my first test of the semester tomorrow in Terrorism Origins and Ideologies. I have just completed my second experiment in the Aerospace Structures and Instrumentation Lab and a slew of homework for all my classes.

I recently was brought onto the team at the Eagle Flight Research Center as an Undergraduate Research Assistant and am very excited to join the amazing team of qualified faculty and student staff. I hope to give more updates soon about this exciting position!

In other exciting news, one of my recent homework assignments for my Aircraft Stability and Control class included going to the pilot tutoring lab on campus and flying a simulator to take a look at how different lifting and control surfaces impact flight when isolated. As an engineer, this was my first experience using a flight simulator!

As an ERAU student, you have access to utilize the Airline Operations Center Lab, located on the first floor of the College of Aviation. While it is a great place for Aeronautics students and pilots to go to study, prepare for check rides, or practice their skills in the flight simulators, all students are welcome! I recently found out about the AOC and was so excited to learn that students of all majors are allowed to access the flight simulators and can do so just by having an Eagle Card!

Flight simulator in the AOC lab!

Another fun highlight of my week, besides getting to virtually fly a Cessna-172 in the AOC lab flight simulator, was getting a surprise package from a friend with a new book! Although I am not sure how much free time I’ll have this semester, I am very excited to dive into The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho.

New book my friend sent me!

I hope everyone is enjoying getting back into the swing of things as classes pick up and tests and quizzes begin again. Will report back soon folks, stay safe!