Sayali Vispute

Class of 2026
Major: Aerospace Engineering
Hometown: Columbia, Maryland
High School: Wilde Lake High School
What Made You Decide to Attend UMD?
I chose to attend UMD because the engineering department offers so many opportunities to apply concepts learned in class to real-world scenarios, such as through class design projects, research in laboratories, and engineering-related clubs and activities. 

Best Experience with a Class or Project
My most favorite class project at UMD was through the Balloon Payload Program's freshmen workshops for ENAE100. For the project, my team and I designed and built a payload that tested the possibility of harvesting kinetic energy from the motion of a payload attached to a balloon during flight. After weeks of brainstorming, designing, building, iterating, and refining, we were able to launch our final payload onto a balloon that reached an altitude of almost 100,000 feet! The whole process of working on a team to build an experiment in a box from scratch and launch it onto a balloon was very exciting, and it led me to stick with the Balloon Payload Program and participate in future launches as well. 

Favorite Class In Major
ENES100: Introduction to Engineering Design

Favorite Class Out of Major
FGSM370: Science Diplomacy: Foreign Policy & Science, Technology, and Innovation

Student Organizations/Extracurricular Activities
Honors Global Communities
Balloon Payload Program
Global Fellows

Favorite On-Campus Event
I love attending the annual Garba hosted by Maryland Masti because it's a great opportunity to dance and celebrate the festival of Navratri with friends and the UMD community!

Favorite Research or Study Abroad Experiences
I haven't yet participated in any research or study abroad experiences at UMD; however, I would love to become involved with the High-Speed Aerodynamics and Propulsion Laboratory to learn more about high speed flow and shockwaves.

Cool Engineering Experience
One cool engineering experience I had during my time at UMD was through ENES100. My team and I worked together to build a Fire Suppression Over-Terrain Vehicle that was able to navigate across obstacles in an arena and blow out only specific candles in a candle box. Through the project, I gained a deeper understanding of coding, sensing, and robotics through the use of Arduino hardware and software; I also learned of the importance of problem-solving and continuously iterating to build more efficient designs. The overall experience also served as a great way to bond closely with my team members!
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