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Tony "Danger" Coiro


College: College of Science

Major: Physics

Graduation Date: May 2012

Hometown: South Bend, Indiana

Career Goal: I have always been fascinated by energy and transportation, however, the more I learned about gasoline powered vehicles, the more I realized that they have serious technical limitations. Between internal combustion's unnecessarily complex engine and its ability to waste almost 70% of gasoline's energy as heat; there has to be a better solution. My career goals start with promoting and pushing the metaphorical envelope in developing electric vehicles because they are simple, several times more efficient, silent and, quite frankly, just better than gasoline. (Admitted, I am not being entirely honest, the main reason I am interested is because I like to go fast and I believe within the next ten years, there will be a performance shift from gasoline to electric, saving the planet is just a cool bonus.) Later in life, I plan to really shake things up by starting a not for profit renewable energy company. To achieve all of this, I plan to become a workaholic, entirely avoid talking to girls and lastly, genetically engineer a tree to grow money.

Best Kept Secret at Purdue: The really late nightlife in and around the Physics building and Armstrong. Without revealing too much, it's where I have met some of the most eccentric and brilliant people on campus. For those people, science and engineering are a 9 to 5 job, it's just that AM and PM are switched. They are also my go-to people when I am going to start a project that's far too absurd for a reasonable person to attempt.

This summer at NYSC, I was sitting with one of the camp's alumni at dinner. Our conversation started normally but, as all conversations at science camp do, it began to get nerdier as we talked about energy, technology and patents. Graphs and math begin to form on napkins. The alumnus was one of the most knowledgeable and insightful people I have ever met but, by the time desert arrived, I realized I had no idea who this guy. So I asked him. He lowered his voice so the other people wouldn't hear him and said "My name is Wes Bush, I'm the president and CEO of Northrop Grumman." The rest of desert was kind of a blur - partially due to the realization of who I was sitting with but mostly due to modesty in how he said who he was. It was an incredibly transformative experience and one I'll never forget.

LESSON: You are always interviewing!

Advice for Students

For freshman, provided you didn't test into class levels of over 9000, your classes will be approximately the same difficulty level as high school. Your biggest challenge will be adapting to a new lifestyle. For probably the first time, you won't have someone telling you to do your homework, go to bed, wake up or you need to eat more than just Oreos for breakfast. Inability to adjust to this is almost always the cause of academic failure and not the difficulty of the course work.

For upper classmen, find something you're passionate about as you will probably spend somewhere between 1/4 and 2/3 of your life working, it would be a tragedy if it was something you didn't like. (If you can't find something you're passionate about, try physics, it's pretty sweet.)

Leadership & Organizations

Purdue Electric Vehicle Club, President

ev Grand Prix

College of Science, Science Ambassador

Resident Assistant at Hilltop

Society of Physics Students