Name: Troy Wallace Pierson
Industry: Mechanical Engineering, Student
Quick starter, strong finisher!
Fun fact: Troy has been recognized across California and the United States multiple times for programming, CNC operation, and his additive manufacturing prowess. He went from summer intern (trainee) to employee (Designer/CNC Machinist) at Applied Medical while still in high school and now attends The University of Alabama.
You have a lot of passion around what you’ve done/what you do. How do you harness that?
What I believe sets me apart from the crowd is my passion and drive for the field of engineering. From my 3D printing experiences back in high school to my state championship SolidWorks and AutoCAD projects to my experiences designing and machining sub plates, fixtures, and mold racks for million dollar CNC machines I have enjoyed every step of the journey.
How did you get the job at Applied Medical? What has that opportunity meant?
At the end of my junior year my class took a field trip to Applied Medical. Touring the incredible facilities and seeing all of the state-of-the-art technology that they employed I knew I had to find a way in the door. I applied for their internship program and once accepted I was ecstatic. It started me on a journey that would see me design for six months in my office for multi-million dollar machines and then spend six months out on the shop floor learning the art of CNC machining.
I take a ton of pride in my work - I want it to mean something.
Do you like the tangible side of the work more than the theoretical?
I think that the physical side of engineering pairs well with the theoretical side and I embrace the intricacies of both. Getting hands on experience in both additive and subtractive manufacturing is something that diversified my knowledge base from my humble beginnings in design. The most rewarding part of my job at Applied Medical was getting to machine parts that I designed so I got to see the project through all the way to completion.
Are you at all apprehensive about the future?
My biggest apprehension over the next four years is figuring out exactly what field of engineering I want to go into. As mechanical engineering is so broad there are an incomprehensible amount of opportunities presented to me. Figuring out what field would best utilize my talents and experiences will be my main focus going into college.
Share some of the important influences in your life with us.
I have had so much help to get to where I’m at. From my family to my mentors to my bosses, I owe my success to those who have invested time in me. My high school engineering teacher picked up on my potential and fostered it. He nourished my talent and made me into who I am today. As Mr. Kendell always said he just watered the seed that was in me. He is my favorite teacher, biggest fan, and best mentor. I am forever indebted to him not only for the skills he has taught me inside the classroom, but for the character and soft skills he has given to me outside of the classroom!
Troy with Mr. Kendell
This story is a part of SME’s #MFGis campaign.
What’s your story?