Meet Jared Lossie. A Lake City, PA graduate of Girard High School, Jared earned his Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Gannon in 2012.
What first drew you to Gannon?
In addition to having an excellent mechanical engineering program, three key things helped me decide on Gannon: it was close to home, had a theatre program, and offered substantial financial aid/scholarships. My whole family is in Erie, and I knew that I didn’t want to travel too far from home. Living on campus at Gannon provided an opportunity to move out and live on my own, while still being a short drive from a home-cooked meal. A theatre program was important to me, not as a field of study, but as an extracurricular. I knew I wanted to be an engineer, but I also wanted to continue to participate in theatre when I had the time. Finally, college is expensive, and Gannon offered a financial aid package that would help me get an education without the strain of immense debt after graduation.
Why were you interested in pursuing engineering in college?
Growing up, I was the kid who played with LEGOs and took apart the alarm clock to figure out how it worked. I had a curiosity to learn why things happened and worked the way they did. In school, math and science came easily to me and grew to be a passion of mine. It was clear by middle school that engineering would be a good fit and everything just fell into place from there.
What were some of your most memorable class, activity or program experiences at GU?
There were so many great memories from my time at Gannon, it’s hard to narrow it down. The theatre provided me with a number of great experiences. I was welcomed in as a freshman, being cast in a leading role only one week after arriving at Gannon.That was amazing. Here I was – a new student – and I was already diving into a show before my first homework assignment. That helped me meet people outside my major and make some great friends.The theatre also provided me with my first opportunity to travel abroad. I was part of the inaugural trip to the Edinburgh Fringe Festival to Scotland. It was amazing to see so much theatre in such a short time while getting to represent Gannon at the International Collegiate Theatre Festival! That is a trip I will remember forever.
As for a memorable class experience, I would say the engineering materials lab was the most fun. It was hands on, exciting and helped solidify my interest in material science.
When did you decide you would pursue a career in engineering?
I was fortunate to obtain an internship at GE Transportation in the fall of my sophomore year; that opportunity really defined the direction of my career. Within different assignments while still attending Gannon, I stumbled upon engine technology and oil systems and really enjoyed it. That was the key for me, working in different roles to identify what I liked and what worked for me.
How is your experience going so far?
Fantastic! In my nearly 7 years working at GE Transportation I have worked on a large number of projects (leading many of them myself), performed component and locomotive testing, traveled the southwest US in a locomotive, and most importantly applied what I learned in college and advanced technically and professionally.
What’s been your greatest accomplishment in the field so far, and what are you looking forward to accomplishing?
Being a young engineer, I am still early in my career. But for me personally, my greatest accomplishment has been leading a design project which successfully solved a major issue. I was given complete ownership of the project and was responsible for its design work, testing, reviews, implementation and success. In the future, I am looking forward to growing technically and professionally, following a path to become a leader within my team, reviewing other projects and mentoring the next generation of interns and young engineers.
You mentioned being involved with activities outside the classroom?
Absolutely! I was a member of – and my junior year, vice president of – the honorary theatre fraternity, Alpha Psi Omega, Pi Tau Sigma (the International Mechanical Engineering Honor Society), and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers. I traveled to Scotland to perform with the Schuster Theatre in the International Collegiate Theatre Festival and performed in at least eight main stage productions here on campus!
What advice would you give someone who is currently in the college search process?
College is all about learning the fundamentals. Real world application will come when you intern and start your career, but the fundamentals are key to build the foundation of a great career. In addition to that, college is a time for personal growth and learning to be on your own. It’s a balancing game. The only way to find the right school is to do the research, visit the campuses, meet the faculty and try the food, you could be eating it for the next four years.
Any final thoughts?
I’ll leave you with is this: get outside your comfort zone. In everything you do and will do, very little of it will initially be in your comfort zone. The quicker you learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable, the better you will become at adapting and excelling at what you are asked to do.