Engineering Student Thrives Through Vehicle Design Opportunity

Layton Streck has a drive to succeed

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Layton Streck
Anticipated graduation year: May 2023
UMKC degree program: Mechanical Engineering
Hometown: Pilot Grove, Mo.

Why did you choose UMKC?

UMKC has so much to offer. Being located in the heart of Kansas City, surrounded by multiple businesses where I could make connections, I saw myself reaching my fullest potential.

Why did you choose your field of study?

Mechanical engineering was a pretty perfect choice. I had always enjoyed being around cars and machines since I was young. I loved working with my hands and understanding how and why things were built. The field is broad enough that I can explore different avenues, whether it is manufacturing, power, HVAC, you name it.

What are the challenges of the program?

The whole program is a challenge! I am constantly studying and figuring out how to balance sleep and other things, but most of the time studying wins.

What are the benefits of the program?

Through this program I have learned the value of collaboration. In engineering it requires a team effort of everyone’s input and ideas to see which is best. I have learned time management, as well as that one bad grade won’t hurt me for the rest of my life.

"Through this program I have learned the value of collaboration."- Layton Streck

How has your college program inspired you?

It has inspired me to understand more of what I can achieve. Though it is tough in the moment, I have grown a lot as an individual.

What other extracurricular activities are you involved in at UMKC?

I am heavily involved in Baja SAE, an intercollegiate design series run by the Society of Automotive Engineers. It is a competition where teams of students from universities design, build and then compete with small off-road racing vehicles. It has given me the opportunity to get hands on engineering experience during my education.

Since entering college, what have you learned about yourself?

Being in college has taught me there are great benefits that come with hard work, whether that is with the Baja Buggy competition, grades or health. I have learned that things go right when you put in effort.

Who do you admire most at UMKC and why?

I admire the older Baja members because they create relationships with the new members by helping with latest ideas and designs. And at some points they help with classes if needed, too. It creates a mentoring environment and helps each member be the best they can be. You can usually point out our older members by their choice of hairstyle - the timeless mullet.

"I hope I will be able see everything that I learn from the time and experience at UMKC in my day-to-day work life."

What do you hope to take from your experiences at UMKC into your professional career?

I hope I will be able to take everything that I learn from my time and experiences at UMKC into my day-to-day work life. The biggest skills UMKC has helped me develop are my communication skills and teamwork mentality.

What is one word that best describes you and why?

Productive. I like to constantly be doing something to help move the project along. Even though sometimes that means not sitting on an idea all the way through, at least I have something to show. My Baja teammates would agree.

More About Layton
What’s your favorite social media channel and why?

Instagram is my favorite. It gives me a chance to connect with other Baja teams worldwide and see how they tackle common engineering challenges and on events outside the competition that are put on by SAE.

What’s your favorite spot to eat in Kansas City?

If I had to pick one spot it would be Parlor in the Crossroads art district, just because it houses many different places to eat in the same building.

Where’s your favorite spot to hang out in Kansas City?

My favorite spot is Westport. It gives a chance to meet with others easily and sometimes network with new sponsors for the team and potential members.

What’s your favorite spot on campus?

My favorite spot is the Baja shop in the brand-new Plaster Engineering building. I spend most of my free time there, as well as socialize with my friends from class.

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