SMU Lyle alum takes on leadership role at Amazon’s space initiative, Project Kuiper

SMU Lyle alumnus Noah Bartos (’18) takes tremendous pride in his role as a project lead in the growing field of space technology at one of the world’s largest companies.

Noah works in Redmond, Washington, as the technical program manager for Project Kuiper, a satellite broadband network in development at Amazon. He works on spacecraft propulsion in this role, which blends computer science with his degree work in mechanical engineering.

“Being able to actually know how to do jobs and have those soft skills like communication, project organization, and project management are starting to become more important now that I’m a few years in,” Noah said. “I was really fortunate to have an awesome start to my career, and I’m really grateful for everything SMU Lyle was able to offer to give me that launchpad.”

Noah credits the knowledge and expertise he cultivated at SMU Lyle with informing his work.

“The technical program manager role was an awesome thing to find after my initial designer role,” Noah said. “I'm really happy with the role; it gives me a good foundation to make that determination in a few years whether I want to go down the people manager route, stay in program management, or maybe go more of an executive track.”

Noah’s passion for engineering took root in high school robotics competitions, where he learned design and build skills that translated well to SMU Lyle, where he majored in Mechanical Engineering and Mathematics before entering the master’s program in Systems Engineering.

Learn more about SMU Lyle's graduate degree programs.

His experience at SMU Lyle opened new pathways to explore his passion in a resource-rich environment with the guidance of faculty who allow students room to explore engineering challenges. Noah worked on numerous projects both as an undergraduate and graduate student at SMU Lyle, from founding SMU Lyle’s Mustang Rocketry Club and developing competitive rockets that can carry payloads to 10,000 feet in the air, to researching and evaluating documents from the Department of Defense.

Dr. Paul Krueger, chair of SMU Lyle’s Mechanical Engineering Department, served as the advisor for Noah’s senior design group, which built the rocket.

“Noah began his project management experience with his work on the rocketry project,” Dr. Krueger said. “He helped organize and inspire the team, and managed the various components of the project to ensure they produced a viable rocket by the end of the year.”

During his time at SMU, Noah participated in multiple internships with top international companies like Boeing and PepsiCo. Upon graduation, he moved to Denver, Colorado, to become a full-time mechanical and propulsion designer at United Launch Alliance. He took a side volunteer role as a mentor and coach for a local high school’s competitive rocketry team, challenging students as he had been challenged at SMU Lyle.

About the Bobby B. Lyle School of Engineering 
SMU’s Lyle School of Engineering, founded in 1925, is one of the oldest engineering schools in the Southwest. The school offers twelve undergraduate and 29 graduate programs, including master’s and doctoral degrees, in the departments of Civil and Environmental Engineering; Computer Science; Electrical and Computer Engineering; Mechanical Engineering and Operations Research and Engineering Management. As a Lyle student, you have 24/7 access to the unique Deason Innovation Gym, which provides the tools and space to work on immersion design projects and competitions to accelerate learning, innovation and leadership. In addition, we have multiple student-led clubs, including Mustang Rocketry, Hilltop Motorsports, Society for Women Engineers, National Society of Black Engineers, Society for Hispanic Professional Engineers, and more. What sets Lyle apart is our intention to build engineers who are not only technical experts, but excellent communicators and leaders. Part of the way we do that is to offer participation in centers and institutes to help students pursue personal passions. Lyle’s centers and institutes include the Hart Center for Engineering Leadership, which helps cultivate engineering leaders by providing leadership training, mentorship, community outreach opportunities, networking, professional development, and career services; Hunt Institute for Engineering & Humanity, which is dedicated to developing and scaling sustainable and affordable technologies and solutions to address challenges facing under-resourced communities; Darwin Deason Institute for Cyber Security, which conducts real-world research to achieve fundamental breakthroughs in cybersecurity; and Caruth Institute for Engineering Education, which strives to increase the number and diversity of students interested in pursuing engineering to meet the ever-increasing demand for a well-educated high-tech workforce.

About SMU 
SMU is the nationally ranked global research university in the dynamic city of Dallas. SMU’s alumni, faculty and nearly 12,000 students in eight degree-granting schools demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit as they lead change in their professions, community and the world.