My name is Thomas Trzpit, and I am currently pursuing an Associates in Science degree at the City Colleges of Chicago with the goal of being an Electrical Engineer. Ever since I was a child, I’ve held a deep fascination for things that were created by people and the knowledge that it took to accomplish such tasks. To me, my father was an engineer before I knew what the word meant, having taught me carpentry and design as I was growing up, and ultimately inspiring me to pursue a career in Engineering. Having originally come from an art background (in fact, I spent over ten years as a graphic designer before returning to school), I have come to find a fusion where my existing design skills are now helping to enhance my emerging engineering skills. This is my last semester at CCC, and I can honestly say that my education has been the most difficult, yet most rewarding, thing that I have ever pursued. To work on the CCC-HAB Project is almost a capstone in my education here, and I hope that I can do well by the project.
As for my ultimate goals, I have become enamored with the potential that robotics and cybernetics offer to humanity, and as such, my dream is to design and build robots that can be used in medicine and related fields, where they can hopefully impact as many lives as possible. For now, all my robots are just little critters that meander around my room, but hopefully one day I will design something that will change how people are able to live their lives for the better.
I signed up for the CCC-HAB Project because, like many STEM majors, I have always held a deep fascination with the world that we live upon, as well as with the stars above. To have the opportunity to work with brilliant scientists and educators to design an experiment that will touch the heavens both humbles me and fills me with pride. In addition, I hope to inspire the many friends that I have back at Richard J. Daley College to pursue similar programs, and to show what possibilities lay before them in the STEM fields. Lastly, I am doing this for my godson, who at the age of 8 is beginning to see the world through older eyes, yet I want him to see that science is a way to keep that childhood wonder for the universe throughout his life, as it has been for mine.
In regards to what I hope to gain from this project, apart from life-long memories, on the technical side I hope to develop more real-world experience with sensor packages and experiments that utilize them. Working in my spare time with hobbyist robots, I have learned about several sensors that are used to help a robot determine its position, but I would like to expand that knowledge to sensors that can feed other forms of information to a robot, and learn how to properly interpret that data. I hope to design an experiment that produces data that is both novel and useful, while also using my engineering skills to improve the design of the experiment.