CASI turns the spotlight on its members who are making an impact across the country and around the globe. These members exemplify the mission and vision of the Canadian Aeronautics and Space Institute. We gladly highlight our members as part of our mandate to make it the place to foster national pride and international esteem for Canada’s accomplishments in aeronautics, space and related technologies. If you are interested in participating or nominating another member for the spotlight, please contact Danielle Tremblay at firstname.lastname@example.org
Today we meet Alejandro Lehman-Rubio a CASI Junior Member since January 2015. Born and raised in Mexico, Alex moved to Canada in 2010 to fulfill his goal of becoming an aerospace engineer. He completed high school in London, Ontario before being accepted at Carleton University in Ottawa. Alex is now in his fourth year of a Bachelor degree in Aerospace Engineering: Aerodynamics, Propulsion and Vehicle Performance.
What is your most memorable CASI experience so far?
My most memorable CASI experience has been attending and presenting at the AERO’17 Conference in Toronto, where I talked about a project from my 16-month co-op at the National Research Council (NRC). Apart from the chance to practice my communication skills, I enjoyed the opportunity to network with other members of the Canadian aerospace industry. I am sure the knowledge and the people I met during the event will be invaluable for my future career, for which I am grateful to both the NRC and CASI.
What’s the highest altitude and speed you’ve reached?
41,000 feet, traveling at 500 knots (926 km/h) on a commercial flight.
What is your current job?
I work at the National Research Council (NRC) as the Structural and Full Scale Structural Testing Engineering Assistant in the Structures, Materials and Manufacturing (SMM) Laboratory. This position has given me great experiences in structural health monitoring and life extension programs for both fixed and rotary wing aircraft. Additionally, I have co-authored a few research papers, one of which I was able to present at AERO’17.
What is the favourite moment of your career thus far?
I have had the opportunity to meet aerospace engineers and I think this collection of encounters has been my favourite element of my career so far. Each one of them has given me the chance to learn from them and given me their opinions on possible paths I could take once I graduate. Also, I really enjoy spending time talking about aircraft, the commercial aviation industry and engineering in general. Finally, I am sure that my time as part of the National Research Council will be a great moment in my career.
What was your childhood dream job?
Completely unrelated to my current field of study, I wanted to be either a truck driver or a meteorologist when I was a kid.
What is your favourite Aero or Astro activity?
I would definitely have to say that my favourite CASI activities have been the monthly talks and meetings put on by the Ottawa Branch on topics of interest for the Canadian aerospace industry. I also look forward to attending future AERO and ASTRO conferences.
Guilty pleasure: what can you not live without?
It would have to be the PC Flight Simulator. I really find it relaxing to operate current commercial flight routes, as well as learning about many topics such as flight deck procedures, aircraft maintenance and air traffic management.
If Hollywood made a movie of your life, who would you like to see play the lead role?
According to my friends, Matt Damon would be the actor who could portray me best.
What is the best career advice you’ve ever been offered?
A professor once told us to always be open to learn and try new things since you never know when they could come in handy, even if it means you will make small mistakes from time to time. This is what will make you a better engineer.
Where would you like to go that you haven’t been yet?
Europe. I would love to visit the historic cities of London, Paris, Rome, Berlin and others.
Star Wars or Star Trek?
Definitely Star Trek.
What decision in your life would you most like to change and why?
Part of me always wanted to start my training as an aircraft pilot as part of my academic development, but I am sure it will become part of my life later on, as flying has been a passion of mine. I am very satisfied with my career choices so far, and I am excited to think about the decisions I will take further along in my professional life.