Thomas Washington, 2019
[At] MIT Lincoln Laboratory’s Flight Test Facility in Bedford, Massachusetts...you’ll find seven aircraft ranging from a Cessna 206 single-engine private plane to a Gulfstream IV multiengine business jet to a Boeing 707. One of the people who flies those airplanes is Lincoln Laboratory flight test pilot Thomas Washington ’92, SM ’94 [Course 16, Aeroastro].
Taking to heart his father’s counsel that “if you’re going to learn something from somebody, then you want to learn from the best that you can,” he mapped out a methodical plan. “I wanted to do this flight test thing. I figured in order to do that, I have to have two things: some sort of engineering degree, and experience flying airplanes. So OK, where do I need to go to get the best technical education and the best flying experience? That’s where MIT and the air force came together.”