As a child in Pakistan, Saqib Raza was known by his family for taking apart remote controlled toys and various household appliances to see how they work.
The problem was he never put them back together.
“That’s why I don’t have any toys from my childhood,” he says with a chuckle.
Raza has set his sights on making a career out of understanding how things work. He is earning a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering at OSU-Tulsa and intends to pursue master’s and doctoral degrees in the field after graduating in December.
“Mechanical engineering has always been my passion. It’s the basis of everything,” he says. “And it’s a very broad degree that can useful in many professions.”
As a College of Engineering, Architecture and Technology (CEAT) Scholar, he spends a lot of time in associate professor Dr. Khaled Sallam’s lab at OSU-Tulsa’s Helmerich Research Center.
His research project is aimed at eliminating spray drift caused by crosswind – a serious problem for the agricultural industry – by experimenting with the nozzle geometry and injection angle. The goal is to better target the spray to specified areas, saving both time and money.
Raza also has been selected as an intern for OSU’s New Product Development Center, which provides technical engineering assistance, guidance and resources to local inventors and manufacturers.
“Research is something that adds to my learning experience and helps me do better in class,” he said. “It also builds my confidence.”
In the little spare time he has, Raza enjoys sketching airplanes. He loves working with engines and has an interest in designing them for jet airplanes. But he isn’t ruling out other career directions yet.
OSU known globally
Raza first heard about OSU and its highly reputable engineering program from his dad’s best friend in Pakistan, who earned an engineering degree years ago in Stillwater. Convinced that OSU was the place for him, Raza made the decision to attend OSU in Stillwater his freshman year.
Then, he decided to move to Tulsa to be near the city’s abundance of engineering firms. While completing his general requirements at Tulsa Community College, Raza also took engineering classes at OSU-Tulsa.
He has flourished during his time here. Raza is social media chair for OSU-Tulsa’s chapter of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) and a member of the elite President’s Leadership Society, which provides high-caliber students opportunities and mentoring while attending OSU-Tulsa.
And he has made lifelong friends.
“I’m so glad I decided to stay here in Tulsa. I’ve made a lot of friends through the student organizations I am involved with and gained so much confidence,” he said. “I’ve also made connections within the profession that will only help me in my career. I really believe I wouldn’t have as much opportunity anywhere else.”
Story by: Kim Archer