“I wanted to explore how the aerospace engineering community could help speed up the pace of innovation in renewable energy,” she said. “Ninety percent of my family still lives in Nigeria and Ghana, and those areas are heavily plagued by the energy crisis and still subject to rolling blackouts. I wanted to see if renewables could be something that could benefit those regions of the continent.” Shodiya applied her aerospace engineering training to redesign wind turbine blades that could optimize the amount of energy generated. She poured herself into the project, but she and her professor couldn’t come up with a design that worked with such low wind speeds. Shodiya was intrigued by the world of research despite those setbacks. But she decided to switch gears and gain experience in the air transportation industry, joining Boeing after graduation as a product design engineer for the 767 tanker and 787 Dreamliner. [...]