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Julia Bigwood '21

BS, Aerospace Engineering

An aspiring astronaut, Julia says WPI is the place where she can do it all: pursue her aerospace engineering dream job while following her passion for music. Not only does she serve as the Sigma Gamma Tau (Aerospace Honors Society) secretary and play trumpet in the WPI Brass Ensemble, Concert Band, and Orchestra, she is the first WPI student to receive a prestigious national aerospace fellowship.

Julia’s involvement with WPI began years ago through its Pre-Collegiate Outreach Programs, and along the way several faculty, staff, and alumni have served as mentors. “Professor Blandino is my all-time favorite aerospace engineering professor—I look up to him  and often seek his advice. He is always more than helpful and very kind,” she says. “[Trustee] Judy Nitsch ‘75 became my unofficial mentor through the Introduce a Girl to Engineering program, and she's helped me with previous summer internships. I met Sue Sontgerath through the Camp Reach program and have worked with her for various WPI summer camps.”

Julia says she’s someone who loves contributing to a team, so WPI's project-based curriculum has allowed her to thrive. “It helps me learn professional communication skills and take on curricular leadership roles within project groups. I'll be studying abroad next term and I'm so excited to see what incredible things my IQP group will accomplish,” she says.

In addition to playing trumpet, Julia is also a vocalist in Alden Voices, where she is outgoing social chair; she is outgoing Song Chair in her sorority, Alpha Xi Delta; and she enjoys participating in VOX Musical Theatre. She especially enjoys her role as a Crimson Key Tour Guide “because I'm often able to spark the same passion I have for WPI in prospective students.”

Julia by flowers

Westborough, MA

Faculty Mentor

John Blandino, Mechanical Engineering/Aerospace Engineering
Sue Sontgerath, Director of Pre-Collegiate Outreach Programs

  • Being chosen as a recipient of the Matthew Isakowitz Fellowship, the first WPI student to be admitted into the program
  • Participating in the Aerospace Honors Society and being elected Secretary on the officer board.
  • Alden Voices
  • WPI Brass Ensemble, Concert Band, and Orchestra
  • Crimson Key Tour Guide
  • VOX Musical Theatre
  • Running
Don’t be afraid to try something new! WPI has so much to offer, so make the most of your four years.
Being as involved as I am in our music program here at WPI has been especially rewarding.
WPI is a great place to get out of your comfort zone and try new things. Everyone on campus is supportive and welcoming, which makes it easy to get involved in new activities.
In my free time I love running! I'm currently training for my second marathon and first triathlon.

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