Where are they now? - Matt Kosky, BS '15

10/11/2021

Debra Levey Larson

Matthew Kosky, BS '15 and his fiancée Anna at a fall 2021 women's volleyball match
Matt Kosky and his fiancée Anna 

Matt Kosky received his B.S. in aerospace engineering in 2015. Recently, he and his fiancée Anna were on campus for a women’s volleyball match in Huff Hall and answered a few questions about what he has been doing since graduating.

What’s your current job?

I'm a structural analyst for Northrop Grumman. When I was first hired my program was still in the design phase and my role was exclusively designing and analyzing composite structures. I became the durability lead a little over a year ago, and as such have had a major role in the redesign and analysis of some of our metallic structures.

What are its challenges?

My main challenges at this point are analyzing manufacturing mistakes to ensure what we build is still safe. My job gives me the opportunity to solve different problems every day and put everything I learned to use. Being so involved in every step of the design and build makes seeing the finished product incredibly rewarding, and I don't think I'd get that level of involvement with another job.

While at Illinois, Kosky participated in the “spike squad,” which is the volleyball student cheering section. Pictured are some of the regulars who were in the same graduating class, although Kosky was the only one in aerospace. Left to right: Ryan Gant, Mark Garofalo, Brent Nelson, Jen Olson, Chris Ryba, Brett Wolf, Matt Kosky, Mark Leipold, and Mateusz Tkacz
While at Illinois, Kosky participated in the "spike squad," which is the volleyball student cheering section. Pictured are some of the regulars who were in the same graduating class, although Kosky was the only one in aerospace. Left to right: Ryan Gant, Mark Garofalo, Brent Nelson, Jen Olson, Chris Ryba, Brett Wolf, Matt Kosky, Mark Leipold, and Mateusz Tkacz

You did a summer internship with Northstar after your junior year at UIUC, correct? How did that internship influence your career goals?

I did. I think that job really solidified my desire to go into the aerospace industry. I had studied aerospace for a few years at that point but still didn't really know what I wanted to do post-graduation. Being there and working on parts that ultimately were used on military helicopters was just a really cool and exciting feeling. I knew I wanted to chase that.

The 2015 AE senior design team took first place in the space design competition. Left to right: David Brandyberry, Peter Grega, Evan White, Jake Dluhy, David Knourek, and Matt Kosky
The 2015 AE senior design team took first place in the space design competition. Left to right: David Brandyberry, Peter Grega, Evan White, Jake Dluhy, David Knourek, and Matt Kosky

Is there a specific course you took at Illinois that has been helpful in your career?

Obviously, my structures classes are all critical in my current role. But I definitely lean on skills I learned in my senior design class all the time.

Are you still working on your master’s degree at the University of Utah?

I graduated with my masters last summer, 2020. I always wanted to continue my studies, but decided to go to industry first. Northrop had a great program through the University of Utah, and it really helped advance my career.

What is something you’ve learned since graduating that you’d like current AE students to know?

That you should always keep learning. Whether that means actual book learning, or learning a new skill, or just finding a mentor, you should always take the opportunity when it presents itself.