Jackson Reid: Aerospace Engineer

Jackson Reid - Utah State University

Reid is a PhD student in Aerospace Engineering and a Presidential Doctoral Research Fellow at Utah State University.

He graduated from USU with a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering. He was able to realize quickly that he picked the right field to study because he preferred aerospace classes rather than structural and electrical engineering.

He has always been fascinated with airplanes. In high school, Reid found a talent in math, but also wanted to be a pilot. These interests led him to a career in aero and flight dynamics as an engineer.

Reid is inspired by golden age of aviation during the 20s and 30s, which includes pioneers of the industry such as the Wright Brothers. He finds it amazing that they risked their lives to help aviation progress.

Reid has not only been involved in his program, but also has taken advantage of the sports opportunities at USU. He played USU Club Volleyball for a few years and loves hiking, camping, fishing, and other outdoors sports.

He has the opportunity to work in the Aerolab of Dr. Hunsaker. The lab focuses on fundamental research, meaning he studies the theories and equations that govern aerodynamics.

A majority of his research is studying wings and how they react in different situations based on their shape. He hopes that this research will lead to a wing with less drag, which is more efficient.

If he could create his own lab, it would resemble the Aerolab. He would love to apply more of his research to real life situations.

The fascination with flight has only increased since beginning his undergraduate degree. He said, “There is a natural beauty that attracts me to [flight]. Even though I know why it happens, the fact that it happens is so cool.”

He enjoys studying aerospace over other the other engineering emphasis because its much more topical. Aerospace research is also less tedious than other sciences.

After graduation, Reid plans on pursuing either an academic or field job. He would prefer a position with variety, and would like to continue his research no matter which field he pursues.


Writer: Bentlee Rice | Office of Research and Graduate Studies | bentlee.rice@usu.edu