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UC students receive aerospace scholarships

Three University of Cincinnati aerospace engineering students recently received the Tabakoff-Kroll Scholarship on behalf of the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics. The recipients were UC students Brett Beard, Kyle Windland and Connor Pingel.

The departmental award is given to junior and senior aerospace students who demonstrate financial need and have an overall GPA of 3.0 or better. Recipients are chosen by a panel of three faculty members – one each with expertise in areas of propulsion, structures and flight dynamics – in the Department of Aerospace Engineering and Engineering Mechanics.

UC professor emeritus Frank Tepe established the gift fund in 2013 to honor former UC aerospace engineering professors Widen Tabakoff and Robert Kroll.

“I wanted to establish this scholarship in honor of both of them because they were both very good professors and very good people,” Tepe said.

Tepe worked as a faculty member in the UC aerospace engineering department for a number of years before retiring in 1994. He did some graduate work with Tabakoff and shared an office with Kroll, who was also Tepe’s flight instructor.

“I got my pilot’s license because of [Kroll]. I wanted to learn how to fly, and taught me how to,” Tepe said. “He became a good friend.”

All three recipients of the award are seniors in UC’s aerospace engineering program, but they also know each other through their senior design capstone project. The students are part of a larger student team that is designing a supersonic business jet for business aviation company Gulfstream Aerospace. In this project, they are combining their interests in manufacturing and design work, as well as fluid and flight dynamics, propulsion and structures.

For Beard, the award was symbolic of the hard work he has put into this project and his time at UC.  

“You work really hard for five years, and you apply for scholarships that you don’t always get,” said Beard. “The fact that I actually won this one puts all the work I’ve done into perspective.”

Windland also saw the award as an affirmation of his dedication to the field.

“To put forth an excessive amount of dedication toward something and then be rewarded for it is very pleasing,” he said. “To know that someone saw my work as something of value and appreciated it feels great.”  

Featured image at top: Scholarship recipients pose with awards. From left: UC Director of Development Janet Ransom, Conor Pingel, Kyle Windland, Frank Tepe and Brett Beard. 

Scholarship Support

UC and the College of Engineering and Applied Science offer a number of merit-based scholarships to students. Learn more about scholarship opportunities at UC’s student financial aid site