Why We Celebrate EWeek

Without engineering, life’s conveniences, like jumping in a car for a road trip or looking up a restaurant on your smartphone, would not exist.

One of the greatest contributions that the engineering community has made, and continues to make, is designing and creating products and services that bring warfighters home safely. That’s why at BAE Systems we’re proudly celebrating engineers at our company in honor of National Engineers Week (EWeek) – an initiative that runs from Feb. 17-21 and aims to increase public dialogue about the need for skilled engineers.

Below you’ll meet some of our engineers. But first, learn about our Engineering Leadership Development Program.

Engineering Leadership Development Program

At BAE Systems, we’ve established the Engineering Leadership Development Program (ELDP) – a program that provides leadership opportunities and training for new hires.
Past graduates of the Engineering Leadership Development Program

This program accelerates the development of recent college graduates, preparing them to take on the responsibility of being engineering leaders at our company. As part of the program, engineers are able to network and further solidify their commitment to creating ideas and solutions that help solve our customers' toughest challenges.

This program has helped guide our employees through the next steps of their engineering careers, including for some of those highlighted below.

Adarsh Ayyar

Adarsh Ayyar is a principal staff engineer for the Human Performance Enhancement (HPE) program at our company.

Adarsh has always been fascinated by how things work, which led him to work on programs such as the Orthotic Load Assistance Device, a backpack with legs designed to help soldiers carry up to 100 pounds of equipment. Adarsh also contributed to a redesign of ejection seats in fighter jets, which has saved the lives of countless combat pilots. He is proud of his work that both protects and strengthens the military.

Jesse Ingram

Jesse Ingram’s discipline is the key to his success.
Jesse Ingram

By tackling difficult math problems regularly while in school, Jesse was able to earn one of the top grades in his Partial Differential Equations class, leading him to pursue a career as an engineer at BAE Systems. At our company, Jesse supports the U.S. Navy’s acquisition program for DDG 51 ships, multi-mission destroyers with an emphasis on air defense and blue-water operations. Additionally, he is a member of our company’s Diversity and Inclusion Council, where he actively mentors new hires and encourages rising graduates to consider careers in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM).

Ali Lavine

Ali Lavine grew up with her eyes pointed to the sky.

Spending her childhood in Houston, Texas, she nurtured a fascination with NASA. Ali went on to study physics, math, and electrical engineering, earning dual degrees from Colby and Dartmouth colleges. She joined the ELDP in 2012, and was given the opportunity to help develop an aircraft cabin demonstration simulator that is now being used to launch the IntelliCabin™ system.

Greg Procopio

Greg Procopio’s time in the field solidified the future of mission understanding.
Greg Procopio in Theater

A graduate of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland, Greg joined BAE Systems as part of the ELDP and began working on a technology that warns and protects pilots from incoming enemy attacks, known as Common Missile Warning System (CMWS) and Advanced Threat Infrared Counter Measures. As a result of his experience with these systems, Greg was invited to be part of a U.S. Army assessment team to address a number of incidents where aircraft were shot down by an unknown weapon system in 2003. For the next two months, Greg examined the wreckage and reassembled the aircraft to determine what enemy weapon system was used.

Being in the field allowed Greg to bring forward several recommendations based on the user, one of which was to install the CMWS on aircraft faster than his original plan. Several pilots have benefited from the CMWS and have expressed their thanks to Greg for developing the system that has saved their lives when they have been in the line of fire.

Shaneaka Robinson

For Shaneaka Robinson, a college co-op program solidified her desire to be an engineer.
Shaneaka Robinson

Upon completing the co-op program, Shaneaka went on to be an intern at Lockheed Martin, where she was approached shortly after by a BAE Systems’ representative at a career fair. She soon began to work at our company in the hardware engineering group, performing field programmable gate array programming, and then lab testing. Through ELDP, she’s rotated through positions in hardware engineering, systems engineering, and reliability engineering, and currently, she’s working to assess how much capacity the machines on the floor can handle.

Willie J. "W.J." Williams, Jr.

Willie J. "W.J." Williams, Jr. always had an inquiring mind that wanted to solve problems.
Willie J.

Growing up, W.J. challenged himself to find answers to questions he didn’t know and enjoyed tackling tough courses like, science, technology, and math. This soon grew into a strong interest in Information Technology, which led him to major in Computer Science at Clemson University. Upon graduating, W.J. started his career as a software developer at Applied Solutions Inc. in Fairfax, Virginia, supporting the defense industry. He soon moved to the customer site, further developing his skills as an engineer. W.J now works for our company as a senior lead software engineer at the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency – a role that he says allows him to use new software and test automation tools while continuing to support the customer in national security.

W.J. was recently honored at the annual Black Engineer of the Year Awards STEM Global Competitiveness Conference, where he received a Certificate of Recognition for being “a special and gifted person.”

Adrienne Bourque

At age 16, Adrienne Bourque decided she wanted to build things after her dad asked her to reconstruct the carburetor in her 1979 Cadillac.

Adrienne came to our company in 1999 after finishing her Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering at the California Institute of Technology. While working at our company’s Santa Clara facility, she also completed her Master’s in Engineering Management at Santa Clara University.

Currently, Adrienne is the Paladin Integrated Management (PIM) survivability lead, where managing engineers and designers who work with integrated product teams to ensure that the PIM’s armor meets the customer’s requirements. Her team also ensures that they integrate armor and other components into the vehicle in a producible, cost-effective way while still meeting ballistic requirements.

Adrienne and her team receive emails from time to time from soldiers saying that the armor kits they’ve sent into the field have saved soldiers’ lives.

Mission Impossible: The Next Assignment

The competition is on!
Team Work - MDS Engineering Week

In honor of EWeek  this year, we’re hosting “Mission Impossible: The Next Assignment” – an engineering challenge where more than 50 teams across seven sites will compete and be given awards for best performance, most innovative, and best team name.

Last year’s “Mission Impossible” was a hit and we expect this year’s will be even better. Stay tuned for the results!