Du, Minzhen

Minzhen Du, a maker, amateur photographer, designer, hobbyist, and more recently, a junior in Aerospace Engineering. Minzhen came from Guangzhou, China, a small town of just over 10 million population, growing up in an international, multi-culture city drove him to make the decision of studying aboard.

Ever since he was a high school student back in China, he has a passion to build new and exciting projects ranging from Unmanned Aerial Vehicles to 3D Printers. At one point he combined these two passions and received an award from the mayor for designing low cost 3D printed UAVs. Eventually, this experience led him into engineering.

On Valentine’s Day in 2014, he received an admissions offer to become an undergraduate student at Virginia Tech. He immediately fell in love with the multi-cultural based campus and joined CEED as a member of the Galileo community.

As a designer and maker, Minzhen values the process of turning ideas into reality. He spends a considerable amount of time in the InVents studio working on all kinds of projects. This led him to becoming a member of Invents Leadership Team, a group of individuals dedicated to help community members designing and building their own ideas in the studio.

Minzhen believes that keeping his mind occupied and gathering more experience is the best way to live his college life to its fullest. Throughout his undergraduate career at Virginia Tech, aside from CEED, he has been involved with multiple design teams and organizations. These include the Atmospheric Teaching Experiment, Design Build Fly, Dreams Lab, VT Cansat, Aerial Robotics Club and VT AUVSI (Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International). He is also currently the president/chair and one of the co-founder of the AUVSI Virginia Tech Chapter, a professional organization focus on promoting unmanned technologies.

Like many other Hokies at Virginia Tech, Ut Prosim is a big part of Minzhen's life, and it's one of the many reasons why he decided to stay in CEED and continue to serve the community. Even when he travels back to China for summer break, he continues to help local schools promote STEM and teach kids how to design basic CAD models and use 3D printers for free.

Minzhen is incredibly grateful for being able to study engineering at Virginia Tech and is by far one of the most enjoyable experience thus far in his life.