Dr. Maged Mikhail, an assistant professor of Mechatronics Engineering Technology (MET) at Purdue University Northwest (PNW), has always been driven by his passion for engineering.
“My dream throughout elementary and middle school was always to be an engineer. Very early on, I wrote on the wall of my house ‘I will be an engineer’ next to my name,” he said.
As one of the winners of the peer-driven Outstanding Faculty Engagement Award at PNW, Mikhail has made quite the positive imprint on the College of Technology as a whole.
“My department head nominated me because of my dedication to serving students. I’m so excited about teaching my students, helping the community, recruitment, and assisting small and medium industry companies,” he said.
Mikhail began teaching at PNW in 2015, but originally emigrated here from Egypt in 2005.
“I grew up in a humble village three hours outside of Cairo, Egypt where my dad and family are farmers,” he said.
Mikhail earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of El Minia (in Cairo) in 2001.
“I was the only one in my village who went to the college. After I graduated as one of the top 10 College of Engineering students, I was hired by the government to work as an engineer for an electrical company. After a couple of years, I joined the Egyptian Air Force and served three years as an Officer Engineer,” he said.
Mikhail also has worked with Boeing Research & Technology Company, as well as NASA.
“I knew I wanted to be a professor since my freshman year of college because my favorite thing was to volunteer and help teach my friends physics and chemistry at the church,” he said.
Shortly after coming to the U.S. in 2005 and beginning his master’s courses at Tennessee State University, Mikhail found himself enrolled in a challenging English course. Behind the scenes, his advisor was pushing him hard to do his best.
“I still remember my advisor and how much he did for me to help me overcome challenges with the English language – writing, technical papers, publications… I really appreciate what he did for me and I always try to do the same for my students,” he said.
Now, Mikhail resides in Munster, Indiana. His favorite part is that it’s close to PNW.
“I can help my students and be on campus within five minutes, even on the weekends. I also like that most of my colleagues are around me,” he said.
Mikhail also enjoys spending time with his wife, Nessereen, who was his college classmate, and his two sons, Beshoy and Mark.
“My family is wonderful. It’s by the grace of God and the blessing of my family that I could have this future,” he said.
His favorite places are the classroom and the lab, working side by side with his students.
“I feel that service is a part of my life and my relationship with the student goes beyond the classroom. I love helping them look for internships and doing research in the lab,” he said.
Mikhail’s highly-favored research topics include robotics, physical cyber security for advanced manufacturing, and control and automation.
His favorite part of the College of Technology is electronics and robotics.
“I chose to work at Purdue Northwest because of the good reputation and because I wanted to help the Northwest Indiana area, as it is so critical to industry,” he said. “I saw that this would be a better place for me to help, grow, and do some service to the community.”
“I feel that Purdue Northwest is moving forward to serve the community better. Teaching here has given me satisfaction beyond what I could imagine. It makes me happy in whatever I do,” he said.
Mikhail’s optimistic outlook on life shines, and is filled with inspiration from others.
“I’m inspired by my religion and how we can sacrifice ourselves to help others. I’m inspired by my family, who sacrificed their lives to educate me. I’m inspired by my wife, who put me first to finish my education. There is so much to be grateful for and inspired by.”
To learn more about Mikhail and his many accomplishments in the field of engineering and within the community, please visit https://www.pnw.edu/people/maged-mikhail/.