CCEFP Alumni Profile: Jonathan Slightam, PhD Candidate at Marquette University

The Center for Compact and Efficient Fluid Power (CCEFP)—the network of fluid power research laboratories, academic faculty, graduate and undergraduate students at seven universities—is making a difference when it comes to preparing a better educated workforce for the fluid power industry. The CCEFP has created a 500% increase in the number of fluid power focused advanced degrees awarded in the United States, with almost half of its graduates going on to work in the fluid power industry.

Jonathan Slightam is a former student of the Milwaukee School of Engineering, one of the CCEFP schools. When asked to provide a summary of his background and experiences in the CCEFP, this is what he said:

Jonathan SlightamI received the bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering and master’s degree in engineering from the Milwaukee School of Engineering in 2012 and 2014, respectively. I am currently an ME Ph.D. candidate at Marquette University, Milwaukee, WI. During my time at MSOE, I was a research assistant in the Rapid Prototyping Research (RPI) laboratory and I had the opportunity to serve as an engineering intern at Parker Hannifin’s hydraulic cartridge systems group located in Lincolnshire, IL. Contributions to the field include the design and modeling of flexible fluidic actuators and their applications.


My current PhD research focus is a continuation of master’s work focusing on the novel design, modeling, and control of mobile fluid-power robots. At Marquette, I am the lead teaching assistant for the Machine Design Laboratory. This position allows for the opportunity to directly teach students in the course about mechanical components, how they are designed, and incorporated into mechanical systems. A notable achievement was being recognized for my work in the technical competition at the Additive Manufacturing Users Group Conference in 2012. I have also contributed to the Wisconsin space grant consortium’s rocket competition and undergraduate research, and helped establish an official chapter of AIAA at the Milwaukee School of Engineering.

To learn more, contact Jonathon at, or visit

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