Bryant Bagnall wants to solve problems and connect technical fields as an engineer – Press and guide

Bryant, a student at Henry Ford College, wants to bridge the gap between technicians and engineers.

“Understanding the other people you work with but don’t see will greatly improve your workplace. If I can do it, it will make me valuable. I think we should all get along better, that’s all,” explained Bagnall, from Grosse Ile.

In an effort to see multiple sides of the job, Bagnall specializes in HFC pre-engineering and electrical engineering technology.

“By studying the technical side of things, learning what they do in the field and how things fit together, I will have 4 or 5 years of experience in the field. I will have knowledge of manufacturing, hydraulics, electrical/wiring and machine programming,” Bagnall said.

A former student of Grosse Ile High School, Bagnall is a member of the College’s Henry Ford II Honors Program. He is expected to graduate from HFC in 2024, earning two associate degrees. Bagnall plans to transfer to Eastern Michigan University or the University of Michigan to continue his undergraduate studies.

Bagnall – who took courses in aviation/flight science at Western Michigan University – worked at Tri-Way Controls Systems, Inc. in Dearborn for nearly a year. Tri-Way provides a full range of machine control services including the design, construction, installation and troubleshooting of hydraulic, pneumatic, coolant, lubrication and electrical systems.

Previously, he worked for Amazon for 18 months. His last position was as a learning supervisor in the training department, where he taught employees how to operate forklifts, enforced heavy equipment safety rules, and ensured safety equipment was within specification.

Aeronautical aspirations

Originally, Bagnall wanted to be an aviator, which is why he went to WMU.

“I loved physics in high school,” he said. “I didn’t want to sit behind a desk. I didn’t want to fix airplanes. I wanted to make them fly!

Bagnall was unable to become a pilot due to medical reasons and eventually signed up for HFC in 2021.

“It was the closest and most affordable college in the area. It also received good reviews and good word of mouth. If I was going to a community college it would be HFC. It didn’t matter that it was out of the district for me – there was an engineering technology program that interested me. I wasn’t going to a four-year school for a two-year degree,” he said. “Engineering was on the back burner in my mind. You have to be technical, smart and hardworking. I never thought I was that kind of person. I decided to become a technician.

Bagnall hadn’t planned on getting a bachelor’s degree until he finished his first semester at HFC.

“I did very well,” he said. “I got top grades at HFC since my junior year of high school. I never got past ‘C’ in English. I got an ‘A’ in English at HFC.

HFC English instructor Betsy Cohn had Bagnall in her introductory college writing class.

“When given the opportunity to choose topics to write about, Bryant was ambitious,” Cohn said. “For example, he chose to research the evolution of cryptocurrency and blockchain technology. He first found, evaluated, and screened credible sources, and created an annotated list of works cited. He went on to use his research to argue that blockchain technology can be used to trace federal financial aid disbursements and to reduce fraud or misuse of funds.His handling of such a complex and technical subject illustrates no only his research and writing skills, but also his critical thinking skills.

The engineering path

Although unable to fly an airplane, Bagnall never lost his interest in flying. He watched video of first-person drones where pilots controlled them through VR goggles, tricking the wearer into thinking they were sitting in an actual cockpit of a jet.

“You get the same visual experience,” Bagnall said. “Plus, you can do tricks and flips and stuff with the drone.”

From there, Bagnall built his own drone, but he didn’t know how to pair the batteries with the flight controls and radio receiver. He couldn’t weld either. So he watched YouTube videos to learn how to solder and perfected battery technology to generate and transmit power to a battery.

“The videos showed me how to do it, but not how to understand it. I wanted to understand,” he said. “When you train someone to understand math and science, their creative side comes out and then they can do proper technical analysis. When you understand how something works and how to make it work, then you can make it better or more efficient!

Create morphable aerial drones

This summer, Bagnall will participate in a fellowship through the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program through UM’s College of Literature, Science, and the Arts. A division of UROP is the Community College Summer Research Program. The CCSFP is for community college students interested in transferring to UM. For 10 weeks, students will work on their projects under the direct supervision of their UM advisors.

Bagnall’s UROP project is Morphable Aerial Drones. He explained that drone frames do not change shape. In his project, Bagnall designs a drone that changes shape, which will make a difference (at least, from a theoretical point of view) in terms of efficiency and fuel economy.

“At the end of the day, I believe I’m on the right track now,” he said. “I plan to learn everything I can about building drones in these 10 weeks. I can build, apply, test and hopefully fly a drone via wireless controls. I love math and science. These are my easiest subjects. I enjoy applying the laws of science to the world to create, innovate and solve problems. The most simplified definition of an engineer I’ve heard is that they they are professional problem solvers.

Cohn is proud of Bagnall.

“Participating in UROP this summer will be just one more step in what I’m sure will continue to be a fascinating and successful journey,” she said. “Because of Bryant’s commitment and curiosity, I was sure he would enjoy greater challenges as a reader, writer, and thinker. I recommended him for the program. honors. Even with this recommendation, he was thoughtful and strategic in planning his education. We discussed the honors program together and analyzed its suitability for his educational goals before he decided to apply.”

HFC Honors Program Director Dr. Adam Hazlett is pleased that Cohn recommended Bagnall.

“Bryant is a superb student,” Hazlett said. “He is hardworking and smart. He often works at his engineering job, but he also has a keen mind for discussion and debate. He is a welcome addition to the honors program.

Source: Henry Ford College

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