James Bilello

Hometown: Glen Cove, NY

“The amount of opportunities that UB holds blew me away, and is honestly one of the main selling points of the campus.”
James Bilello
Aerospace Engineering

Why did you choose to attend UB?          

UB was the only SUNY and affordable school that had Aerospace Engineering. Luckily, for me, UB exceeded all of my expectations with opportunities, academics, and offers.

Why did you decide to major in MAE?     

Over time, I realized that going into the Space industry was my calling and what I wanted to pursue.

What is your fondest memory so far at UB?

My fondest memory of UB has to be joining the Nanosatellite Laboratory on campus before classes even began.

What is your favorite thing about living in Buffalo?

Having all the tunnels on campus, as well as the bus system.

What was your involvement outside the classroom?

Because I was an engineer interested in space, my main activity was the Nanosatellite Lab (UBNL), with minor involvement with SEDS. I also decided to have a little fun and joined the Improv club.

Were you involved in internships and/or undergraduate research? What was that like?

If it wasn't for the Nanosatellite Lab, I would have never had the opportunity to work at NASA twice. Research was never anything I had planned on doing, but after being involved and learning what research really entails, it made my experience at UB that much more enjoyable.

What makes your UB story unique or noteworthy?

The amount of opportunities that UB holds blew me away, and is honestly one of the main selling points of the campus. Sure, academics are important, but without actual hands on experience, one cannot really call themselves an engineer.

Aside from engineering, what are you passionate about?

I have always loved Improv comedy, as well as music and gaming. I tried to spend most of my time working towards a brighter future, but everyone needs something to help them relax and enjoy themselves.

What are your plans after graduation?     

Currently, I am signed up for an internship at NASA Goddard for the summer. Following this, my intentions are to attend graduate school at UB or see if I can find a job I would really love.

What will you miss most about being a UB undergrad?

There really is nothing like undergrad. After 7 years, they have been some of the most enjoyable times of my life. Being involved with Nanosat, with the relative freedom to make my own decisions about how I want to spend my time is really going to be missed.

What is your advice to current and incoming MAE students?

Get involved. Academics are important, but join at least one club or research group that is directly involved with your desired future and one club that you do for fun. You will thank me later.