photo of Shawn Lee

Major

Aerospace Engineering

Technical Area

Space Flight

Hometown

Seoul, South Korea 

What made you decide to pursue an aerospace engineering degree? 

I see aerospace engineering as an interdisciplinary major. It holds aspects of multiple engineering and scientific fields such as mechanical engineering, chemical engineering, and physics, while attaining topics that are specific to its own. This makes the major highly diverse and unique. That is why I chose to study aerospace engineering. Going into it, I knew that I would have numerous paths to take in terms of my career by the time I achieve my degree. Plus, it is pretty awesome getting to study literal rocket science. 

Who has been your most influential ASE or EM professor and why? 

Dr. Thomas Connolly has been the most influential professor for me in college. I have had the privilege of studying Engineering Dynamics (EM 311M) under Dr. Connolly in Toulouse, France and Barcelona, Spain as a part of a Maymester study abroad program. During the program, my classmates and I felt his genuine love for teaching, making the class more engaging and interesting. I absolutely love the way he prioritizes his students and takes pride in being an educator.

Has involvement in student groups and/or organizations made a difference in your education?

I have been a part of the Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) team for a year, and it has become one of the most important parts of my college life. In UAV, I learned numerous hands-on skills such as composite manufacturing and advanced machining that I would not have encountered in a traditional class setting as a freshman. Additionally, I have gained research skills, leadership abilities, and management experiences that I believe will benefit me greatly in the future. 

What are some things you really enjoy about living in Austin, TX?

Though I was born and raised in South Korea, I have been an Austinite for the last nine years. Over these years, I never got bored of the city. Austin is vibrant and active. There is always a local restaurant to try for the first time, a concert I can go to with my friends, and a park my family and I can have a picnic at. Personally, one of my favorite things in Austin is Trail of Lights at Zilker Park during the holiday season. Also, because UT is integrated into the city, it is very easy to have adventures in Austin as a Longhorn. 

List three things that most people don't know about you. 

  • I was born and raised in Gangnam, the fashion district of Seoul known for the 2012 YouTube sensation, Gangnam Style. 
  • I have played flute for 10 years, and I was part of a jazz band for a little while. 
  • Aside from aerospace engineering, I enjoy modern architecture and art history.