Student Spotlight - Ritter Kinsella

Tell me a little bit about yourself (name, where you’re from). 
I am originally from Lawton, Oklahoma. I lived most of my youth there. I also lived in Compton, California. I often lived between the two. It was a pretty rough upbringing. I ended up in Seattle area after my mother died in 1993.

Why did you choose EvCC? 
I chose EvCC because I went here previously for academic studies and enjoyed my instruction.

What did you study at EvCC?
I studied precision machining, composite structures, robotics, hydraulics and pneumatics (mechatronics), CAD engineering design, product design and project management and lastly technical problem analysis (engineering mathematics).

What degrees or certificates did you earn?
I have an ATA (associate in technical arts degree) in precision machining and certifications in aerospace composites, aerospace precision machining and aerospace robotics.

What interested you about the precision machining program?
As a design engineer, I wanted to know how to fabricate metal so that when I had to design a part I would be able to design something that could actually be machined. A lot of engineers design things that cannot be fabricated.

What skills did you learn at AMTEC?
Engineering skills. I also learned to design my first rocket engine. One of my instructors had designed and tested his own rocket and pointed me in the direction to design my own. I have since designed four rocket engines and will build and test them after I move to Texas and start my new job.

How do you think these skills will help you to reach your professional goals?
They helped me to have hands on technical skills that I could use in industry. Along with my own independent study of nuclear physics, chemistry, and mechanical engineering, I was able to have knowledge that employers could appreciate and see me as an asset to the company.

Tell me about your new job at Lockheed Martin. 
My official title is low orbital coater. I will be responsible for developing and implementing new designs for spacecraft and satellites for the Navy and NASA via Lockheed Martin.

Describe the best experience you had at EvCC. 
My overall experience was great. I would have to say my best experience was when I took my engineering math course. I was impressed at how well I did. Math has never been my strong subject, but due to my hard work and dedication, I passed with a B-. I practically lived between the main campus tutor labs and AMTEC (Advanced Manufacturing Training and Education Center) tutor labs.

What advice do you have for new students?
Understand that college of this level requires hard work, dedication and most of all self discipline. You will have to spend many hours of study and many hours in the lab to pass with an understanding of your craft, versus just a good grade.

Anyone can remember material and pass a test, but the dedicated student can also go out into industry and talk industry craft with other professionals. It's all in how you craft and design yourself. As you go to school and learn, you are also sculpting yourself and your discipline, both of which you will need in order to be successful in your craft.

You have to come in every day with the idea and mindset that you are going to work. Act like your instructors are your supervisors and managers, in which case you need to do your best. KNOW YOUR JOB AND HOW TO PERFORM IT. Do these things and you will have great success.

Would you recommend EvCC's precision machining program to others? 
Yes. I have in fact suggested to many people I have met and know that they should attend this college for various classes including machining.

Is there anything you'd like to add?
I attribute my success to not only my hard work and dedication but also to my classes and to my instructors who helped me achieve my goals and never let me down or allowed me to let a few setbacks turn into career and dream failures. It's because of all of this that I am successful.