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Alumnus Credits Hard Work and Perfect Timing for Career Success

Alumnus Credits Hard Work and Perfect Timing for Career Success
Eric Magliarditi ‘14 graduated from Sage Hill in 2014 and went on to study both engineering and finance at Washington University in St. Louis (WashU). Although he studied both engineering and finance, for the first 2-3 years at WashU, he was mainly focused on his business education and tailored his professional experiences to fit his finance background. After thinking about his long-term passion for space and love of math and science, he made a quick pivot and decided to complete a master’s in Aerospace Engineering after graduating from WashU in 2018. Eric had the incredible opportunity to study for his master’s at MIT and graduated from MIT in 2020. Following graduation from MIT, he interned at SpaceX as a data scientist and then moved into his current role as a Mission Integration Engineer focusing on National Security Space Launch, where he happily works today.
 
How did you get started in your profession? 
Lots of schooling and some lucky timing! It is hard to pinpoint a specific event that caused me to get started in my current role, but I know for a fact that I would not be where I am today if I had not worked hard to keep my options open. I was always interested in a variety of subjects, and it was hard for me to pinpoint a single topic or line of work to follow. I always wanted to learn more, and although this meant taking more classes at times, it gave me a strong foundation across multiple disciplines. The jack of all trades approach is not for everyone, but it has given me the ability to learn quickly and efficiently which is critically important in my current role. Timing also plays a key role in everything. In April 2020, I was planning to work for a startup before my job offer was rescinded due to COVID. Although it was not the best news to hear given graduation was less than a month away, having a wide skill set provided me with multiple opportunities. I checked the career page at SpaceX and there just happened to be an open position that interested me. I was able to quickly pivot, and before I knew it, I had landed a role at a company that I had my eyes on since I graduated from Sage Hill!
 
What is your proudest accomplishment since graduating from Sage Hill School?
I think it is important to be proud of the work that you as an individual can control, and less on outcomes that are subject to additional influences that are out of your control. When I look back, I am most proud of my hard work during the fall semester of my senior year at WashU. During that semester, I took my heaviest and hardest course load and pushed myself to my limits so that I could put myself in a position to be a successful applicant to master’s programs when I graduated. I truly believe that the experiences I had at MIT allowed me to get to where I am today, but the only reason I was able to be a strong applicant was because of the work I put in during that fall semester. Most of my friends were done with their key classes or only needed a few more classes to graduate, meaning there were plenty of distractions. I had to work extremely hard, but finishing the semester strong academically and having all my grad school applications wrapped up was one of the best and most proud feelings I have experienced.
 
What about your experience at Sage Hill prepared you for what you are doing now?
When I was back in high school, Sage Hill did a great job pushing me to think as an individual and to think critically about the world around me. I left Sage Hill with a very strong sense of self and this was due to the conversations and learning that I had throughout all of my classes. Sage Hill pushed me out of my comfort zone and taught me to not be afraid to ask questions. This has allowed me to grow and develop and get to where I am today.
 
What about your Sage Hill experience impacted the person you are today? This could be a favorite class, a person, a club, etc:
AP Physics with Mr. Irwin and AP Econ with Mr. Anderson my senior year had a major impact on who I am today. Mr. Irwin kicked off my interest in physics and engineering, and Mr. Anderson taught me critical life lessons that I still try to live by to this day. Both of these classes had a major impact on my academic and professional development, and I know I would not be where I am today without their guidance. (There were many other teachers that had a big impact on me including Dr. Haney, Mrs. Bradshaw, Ms. Orr, Mr. Zarubin, Mrs. Dear, Mr. Hayden, Mr. Parker, and many more!)
 
If you could share one piece of advice to current Sage Hill students, what would it be?
As [former Sage Hill president, Gordon McNeill,] would say - be interested because that makes you interesting. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and think for yourself; it will allow you to better understand who you are and the world around you!


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