Published: Sept. 3, 2022

Roland Barnabas IlyesName: Roland Barnabas Ilyes
Advisor: Morteza Lahijanian
Lab: Aria Systems Group
Program: Aerospace BAM Student

I am from Arvada, Colorado and I've always been interested in math and science, particularly when we see solutions to problems that make so much sense that it's hard to believe they came from a bunch of equations. It's a bit of a "eureka" moment.

The first time I felt this in my undergraduate program was when we learned about control theory. The problems usually consist of many ugly differential equations, but the first approach we learn to control these systems is extremely intuitive and rewarding to implement. It's this satisfying feeling of seeing a complex system behave the way you want it to that sparked a flame of passion in me, and still keeps me yearning for more.

Growing up in Colorado, I was already very fond of the beautiful city of Boulder. When I was looking at universities to attend, I knew I wanted to pursue an engineering degree.

Furthermore, I was very impressed by CU Boulder's esteemed Aerospace Engineering Sciences program. Visiting the astounding campus was the final big selling point! I've loved it here ever since.

As senior year approached, I found myself very interested in the Bachelor's-Accelerated Master's (BAM) program. It provided an excellent path to first see what some graduate courses were like before having to decide to commit to a higher degree.

Luckily for me, I loved the first couple graduate courses I took and decided to stick around!

I am now pursuing my MS in Aerospace Engineering with a focus on Autonomous Systems, and am on track to finish this Fall. I am completing a thesis under Professor Morteza Lahijanian, doing research with the Aria Systems Group.

The thing I love most about CU Boulder are the vast resources and freedom to pursue my topics of interest. The Aerospace Engineering Sciences building is equipped with various laboratory facilities, fabrication equipment, and testing environments to accommodate all sorts of projects!

Beyond that, the faculty and other graduate students both in Aerospace and throughout campus create a very collaborative environment.

Researching at CU Boulder makes you feel like you're part of a large network of great minds pursuing excellence.