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Eric Lery: Undergraduate

What sparked your interest in engineering?

My interest in engineering kind of came from the mechanical side of things. I was a construction worker and so I really like the mechanical aspect. Studying robotics has really given me a chance to learn 3D modeling and 3D printing, and to interface that and actually be able to make something move has been extremely rewarding.

Why robotics?

I had a hard time choosing between electrical, mechanical, and computer engineering so I thought I might as well do all three. My favorite class has been mechatronics because it covers the breadth of robotics from start to finish. Everything we learned up until then sort of culminated in this class and it was incredibly challenging but also cemented myself in the department and I made really strong connections with my fellow classmates.

What project(s) have you been working on recently?

My senior project is a hydroponics control system. We’re looking at all the inputs to a hydroponic system, which include the PH, the temperature, the nutrient levels and we’re working on controls to keep those all at the correct levels. That involves some mechanical, electrical, and software design. It’s a nice use of our robotics skills.

What do you like about the Baskin School of Engineering?

What I think is amazing is the community we have and the collaboration. I’ve heard some other engineering colleges are very competitive and while we do have some competition here, it’s also extremely collaborative. I’ve recently become a tutor and that experience of bonding and group work makes me realize UC Santa Cruz is special in that way and they really promote that interaction.

What do you like to do for fun?

I love surfing. There’s no better way to destress than to get out in the water or in the redwoods. I really enjoy the kooky weirdness of Santa Cruz.


Electrical and Computer Engineering
Degree Program: 
Robotics BS
Undergraduate Institution: 
UC Santa Cruz