Ian Holmes is a Ph.D. student in the aerospace engineering department, and inaugural recipient of the Department of Aerospace Engineering National EXcellence in Aerospace Sciences (NEXAS) Fellowship. He graduated in May 2021 from the California State University, Long Beach with a B.S. degree in Aerospace Engineering with an emphasis in Astronautics. During his undergraduate studies, he spent three years participating in the BUILD program as an NIH-funded research assistant focused on experimental and computational high-speed impact testing. He completed his engineering honors thesis on developing computational strategies using smoothed particle hydrodynamics to simulate bird strike impacts in commercial aviation.