Meet a Fluid Power Scholarship Winner – Albert Ly

The NFPA Education and Technology Foundation has awarded 23 $2,000 scholarships to students pursuing fluid power related fields of study.

One of the winners, Albert Ly, is attending Illinois Institute of Technology, and is a previous awardee of the Fluid Power Scholarship. Albert provided us with an update on his fluid power education.

What class(es) did you take within the last year that expanded your understanding of fluid power? Did the class(es) impact your long-term career plans? What are your fluid power educational track/career aspirations?

In the past year and since my last time in contact with the NFPA, I have expanded my knowledge and understanding in fluid power. In my Fall 2022 semester, I used the funds acquired from the NFPA Fluid Power Scholarship for a fluid power course at Triton College. During that semester, I learned how the concept of fluid power can be found in many everyday situations and operations one could think of. In addition to that, the course allowed me a chance to test out my knowledge in fluid power with projects involving the concept, mainly revolving around pneumatics since hydraulics would be too messy for the classroom setting. That same semester, I graduated from Triton College with a degree in Mechatronics. Taking that fluid power course had impacted my long-term career plans in that it helped further my interest in robotics. Before I took a fluid power course, I had taken programming courses due to my interest in computer science. This then evolved towards a developing career in robotics after I had a discussion with an engineering instructor about my hobbies and goals. I have always had a fascination with robotics and with knowledge of fluid power under my belt, I feel as though my pathway towards a robotics-centered job position is further secured with the functional aspects taken into account.

During my time at Triton while working on my fluid power course work, I was offered a job opportunity with a local manufacturing equipment company called Best Packaging, Inc. There, they deal with fluid power concepts all the time with machine repairs and refurbishing that they do for other companies. After seeing that I was finishing a degree in mechatronics along with a course in fluid power, a representative contacted me with a job offer for an intern position at their company. There, I would assist and shadow the other employees present throughout their daily operations. I started back in January of this year after graduating from Triton and so far, I see fluid power concepts that I learned from my course present in my workplace with the machines that we repair and refurbish. Currently, I am working towards a bachelor’s in Industrial Technology and Management over at the Illinois Institute of Technology as a full-time student while also working part-time over at Best Packaging. With further education over at IIT, I plan on also learning more about applying fluid power concepts with different machines and operations so as to further my career in fluid power, robotics, and industrial technology in general. After gaining further knowledge on the applications of fluid power in different concepts such as robotics, I plan on moving forward to a higher position.


A minimum GPA of 2.5 out of 4.0, 500-word essay, and letter of recommendation were required from each applicant. The NFPA Foundation’s goal is to help graduating high school students, and individuals enrolled in community colleges, technical schools and universities pursue their academic interests in fluid power.

One way NFPA members can get involved with scholarship programs is to volunteer as a judge to serve on the application review committee or mentor a robotics team as they work towards incorporating pneumatics in their designs. This year 16 judges from 13 NFPA member companies reviewed 50 student applications to the Fluid Power Scholarship program. If you are interested in learning more, please contact Haley Nemeth at hnemeth@nfpa.com.

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