Samantha Corrado

Ph.D.A.E. 2021

What is your next adventure?

After graduation, I’m moving to Boston where I’ll start working as an applied scientist at Amazon Web Services (AWS). I’ll be working on applying machine learning techniques to improve their cybersecurity. I’m also getting married next June in Scottsdale, Arizona.

What about your next adventure are you most looking forward to?

I’m most excited to work in cyber security and developing machine learning solutions. I’m also excited to jump into a new field and learn all the new terminology and background the fundamentals and getting to apply the skills I’ve learned during my Ph.D. at Tech.

Did you have any previous co-op, internship, or research experience in this area?

I’ve been on quite a few different research projects which has given me a really diverse range of aerospace experience overall. I’m super grateful for the Aerospace Systems Design Lab (ASDL) for having such a wide array of research projects. I was on a project that involved modeling the U-2 aircraft and F-35 fleet sustainment and maintenance operations, another one that involved discrete event simulation, and another that used simulation to assess the impact of proposed technology improvements. We’d use this information to come up with an optimal portfolio of which technology improvement should be considered and which one has the greatest impact and warranted a large investment. 

In the summer of 2018, I interned with Lockheed Martin where I focused on data fusion algorithm development at their Fort Worth, Texas location, specifically implementing Kalman filters for targeting tracking applications.

How did your educational experience at Georgia Tech help you to achieve your goals?

Tech was a very different experience compared to my undergraduate experience. Manhattan College where I received my bachelor’s degree didn’t have an aerospace school, it was mostly business, education, arts, and science, and had a very small engineering school. At Tech, one of the biggest differences besides the size, was the amount of opportunities. Here there are almost endless opportunities and with a big school, comes big research opportunities. I was exposed to so many different types of problems, facets of different problems, and the different methods to be applied to solve problems. That helped give me a better background to approach new problems because I’ve seen everything done and the different ways you can approach it. Tech is huge and has amazing research facilities so the diversity of research when you start your Ph.D. is impressive and helped me in so many ways.

What advice would you give to an underclassman who would like to follow the same path?

Get involved in research early, even if it’s something you think you might not enjoy at first. Try it out because every project you're on you gain new skills and you never know when those skills could be useful down the line. That was a big benefit of ASDL in general. I was on so many different research projects and so many different types of projects that I picked up skills that I thought at the time might not have been super relevant but ended up being so important in future job interviews.

Try your best to align with something you’re interested in but any research opportunity is a good research opportunity as long as you're gaining skills.