Co-op Works Alongside Defense Industry Experts at Rockwell Collins

September 15, 2017

David Wigley, BSCO ’19

David Wigley, BSCO ’19

David Wigley, BSCO ’19, hopes to bring his coding skills to the defense industry. In his role at leading aviation technology company Rockwell Collins, he finds himself working side-by-side with industry experts.

Wigley’s coworkers specialize in military airborne radios. “They are the experts,” he says, noting that he has enjoyed working “with the people who lead the field.”

As Rockwell’s embedded software engineering intern, Wigley has been part of a team working on modernizing the B-2 Stealth Bomber’s radio communications technology for the modern age.

“Initially it was a lot more difficult than what I was expecting, because there was so much to evaluate,” Wigley says. “It wasn’t ‘code this thing’—you had to understand the full scope of what you were working on.”

Wigley says that he had to figure out why something works a certain way and then whether or not the solution he was working on was the most efficient one.

He credits his Wentworth education for preparing him to successfully manage his job’s engineering demands and adapt quickly, specifically citing “Object-Oriented Programming” with Assistant Professor Aaron Carpenter and “Network Theory 2” with Assistant Professor Yugu Yang-Keathley as being especially helpful. “At first [the work] was totally overwhelming, and now it’s just a part of every day,” Wigley says.

After graduating from Wentworth, Wigley hopes to attend graduate school before entering the defense industry’s engineering field.

“I want to do something that actually matters to someone,” he says, “which is why I want to be involved in the defense industry. It’s about keeping people safe.”

--Stephen Kim

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