Blake Danis has always been engaging, creative and inventive.
When he was a senior at Air Academy High School in Colorado Springs, Danis designed the first-ever spring-loaded automatic extending fishing net, dubbed the Castanova – it was the moment he knew engineering was the perfect catch.
Now, in the home stretch to a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering, Danis found his happy place at Colorado State University. The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering has allowed him to bring bold ideas to life through hands-on projects – and share his passion for engineering with the next generation.
“Blake is a standout student who really shines when it comes to design. He is always full of ideas,” said Olivera Notaros, head of student projects for the ECE department. “His excitement for engineering is contagious.”
In 2018, Danis helped launch the ECE outreach team to hook middle and high school students’ interest in electrical and computer engineering. The team cast a wide net in Northern Colorado to engage students of all backgrounds in interactive demonstrations, from lighting up the room with capacitors that make fire to teaching the basics of coding and building electromagnets.
“Electrical engineering is so abstract … it kind of seems like magic,” said Danis. “Our goal is to bring that magic into reality by showing students how engineering works.”
Growing up with both parents as engineers, Danis had built-in mentors to guide his journey. Besides fueling his interest in the technological landscape, they taught him how to unplug from the modern world. When Danis wasn’t rebuilding obsolete disk drives from his mother’s workplace, he was cultivating his love for fly fishing.
Danis plans to spend the next two months recharging in nature before starting a new position in July as a development engineer with AMERGINT Technologies. Excited to continue on his path to innovation, Danis hopes he helped future students see the potential of electrical and computer engineering the way his parents influenced him.
“If I could one day turn an idea into the next big technology – that would be my dream,” said Danis.