University of Dayton School of Engineering

Car Safety Comes First

By Erin Frey '18

“This feels right,” she thought.

Bridget Hamblin has always known she wanted to be an engineer. “I loved puzzles growing up because I liked to see how things work together to make something bigger,” she said. “And then I fell in love with physics and just wanted to take more classes.

I have a passion for constantly learning and problem solving.”

The Wisconsin native said that when she was a student, she was one of the few female mechanical engineering majors at the University: “Kettering Labs only had women’s bathrooms on every other floor.”

Although she was a minority, she never felt like her views were discounted. She said she credits many of her professors who always made sure her voice was heard with the self-confidence she developed.

Hamblin is a senior engineer in the suspension performance department at Honda R&D Americas and led the dynamics team for the 2016 Honda Civic that won the North American Car of the Year award.

“The team as a whole was extremely proud of the car and knew that we had made a home-run product well before the award was given. We had all worked really hard to bring the best of all of our areas to the customers, and always keep that Honda high quality, fun-to-drive mentality as the focus,” Hamblin said.

Although she doesn’t consider herself a huge fan of cars, she appreciates understanding how and why they work. Her main task is to make sure everything in the vehicle feels right. From little bumps on the road to taking sharp left turns, Hamblin is responsible for the car’s functionality and gets to test drive the cars at Honda’s facilities near Columbus, Ohio. She finds her job particularly interesting because she said it is a “physical and real-life representation of engineering.”

“Each day is filled with a new challenge and learning curve, but they always offer extremely rewarding opportunities,” she said. “New technology means new projects, and I look forward to them as they come to me!”

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