- Published on Friday, January 24, 2014 09:37
- Published on Monday, January 13, 2014 11:42
Hometown: Ionia, Michigan
Majors: Psychology and Biology with a concentration in Neuroscience
Campus Activities: Albion Student Ambassadors, Tour Guide, Biology Teaching Assistant, Cross Country, Track and Field
Why did you choose Albion?
I visited Albion during the final months of my senior year because my sister-in-law recommended I check it out before I made my decision. At the time, I was absolutely certain I was attending another school. After going on tour and having personal conversations with professors, I reconsidered my previous decision. I felt like my fit was Albion.
What is your best Albion memory or experience?
My first year at Albion was the best by far. The day I moved in, a fellow freshman began playing a fiddle in my hallway, which began an all-out dance contest. Overall, the community and friendships built in Wesley Hall are ones I will never forget.
What are your future plans?
I plan to attend graduate school for psychology, biology, or neuroscience.
How have financial aid and scholarships helped you?
Financial aid and scholarships definitely guided my decision when choosing a college. Thankfully, Albion’s generous assistance allowed me to attend. I never thought it was possible to have the best of both worlds: a great college and financial aid.
How would you finish this sentence: "Because you give to Albion, I'm able to…
…meet amazing people, receive an infinite amount of assistance, and learn emotional, intellectual, and interpersonal skills that I will hold onto for the rest of my life.
- Published on Wednesday, October 09, 2013 08:00
The sky’s the limit for all Albion alumni, but in Josh Cassada’s case, that might not be quite high enough. He has spent much of the past decade flying combat and rescue missions, training pilots, and testing out new wings for the U.S. Navy.
Then two years ago, at the ripe old age of 37, Cassada began helping the Navy purchase planes, directing nearly $28 billion in contracts with Boeing. In this role, he is responsible for overseeing production of the P-8A (anti-submarine) and KC-46 (refueling) aircraft, airborne early warning and control systems, and unmanned aerial vehicles. Cassada currently serves as a test pilot for the P-8A, evaluating each one for the government prior to purchase and delivery.
A standout physics student at Albion, Cassada earned recognition as an exemplary graduate teaching assistant. While completing his doctorate, he was a research assistant at the Collider Detector Facility within the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory and also served briefly as a postdoctoral fellow there. Wanting an even bigger challenge, Cassada joined the U.S. Navy, becoming a patrol plane commander and pilot. He and his 10-member crew assisted with tsunami relief, did stand-alone counternarcotic operations, and flew 23 combat missions, including ground support and reconnaissance for Operations Iraqi Freedom, Joint Guardian, and Deliberate Force. Cassada also trained military test pilots at the U.S. Naval Test Pilot School in Patuxent River, Maryland.
In 2011, Cassada was recognized as the Defense Contract Management Agency Northwest Field Grade Officer of the Year. He has received several military medals, including combat medals from the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. Cassada holds two graduate degrees in physics from the University of Rochester. He and his wife, Megan, are the parents of Quinn and Graham, and live in Seattle.