In celebration of Engineering Week 2021, we're hosting a Q&A series with our Engineers.
Meet Josh Huesman, Mechanical Engineer at PaR Systems.
Q: What is your engineering discipline? / What type of engineer are you at PaR?
A: I am a mechanical engineer at PaR.
Q: What do you enjoy the most about engineering at PaR?
A: I like that I don’t know what’s coming in the door next. We get to work on a really big variety of projects. Every project I’ve worked on at PaR so far is very different from my previous projects. I’m always learning new things and I get to be very creative at finding solutions. That’s my favorite part, that I’m never doing the exact same thing every day. It keeps things interesting.
Q: What has been your biggest challenge while an Engineer at PaR?
A: Every new project has its own challenges that come with it. The variety of projects can be a challenge itself. We are always trying to engineer new solutions.
Q: What would you say has been your biggest engineering accomplishment that you are most proud of?
A: The first task I worked on at PaR, I designed some robotic arms. It was the first design I did out of school, but I had some good guidance around me when I needed it. That the par team trusted me enough to handle such a big engineering task meant a lot to me. I was really proud when the team finished the project.
My biggest accomplishment before I joined PaR, was one of the robots I designed in college. The robot was designed to mine simulated regolith on Mars. It was completely autonomous and my team ended up winning 2nd place two years in a row in a nation-wide competition.
Q: What does being a PaR Engineer mean to you?
A: To me, it means being adaptable. I am always working on something different. I try to take solutions in previous projects and apply the concepts to new projects to create solutions for many different things.
Q: What has been your biggest learning moment as an Engineer?
A: Sometime in college, I realized how little you can know about something. You could learn about something for your entire life and still not know everything about that subject. This stuck with me and I am always aware of how much I don’t know and I don’t try to fool myself into thinking that I know everything about any one subject. There is always a lot to learn, even if you are considered an expert at something.
Q: Why did you decide to go into Engineering?
A: I changed what I wanted to do so many times growing up, but sometime in middle school I started taking apart a lot of my Dad’s old stuff. Like old 3 wheelers. I took one apart and tried to get it running again. I kept doing this with other things, like my first car. This gave me an appreciation for mechanics that I never had before. I think a lot of people are this way. When you use something you just expect it to work but you don’t think about the time and effort it took someone to put in to make that item function. A few years later, I took the ASVAB test and I knew the answers intuitively. The proctor asked me about going to mechanical engineering and it stuck with me. It seemed like a perfect fit for me since and I have never regretted it.
Q: What advice would you give to a new employee just joining PaR as a new engineer? Or to a student looking to go into Engineering?
A: Make sure you are actively listening and asking questions of others because they have more experience than you do. School teaches you a lot of things, but gaining real experience is the best way to become a better engineer. The easiest way to get that experience is to borrow it from other people and learn lessons from others around you.
As a student, I suggest joining a club related to whatever career path you are going to school for. I joined a robotics club and I learned so much more than I learned in class.