Trailblazers / Dyson Engineers

Sean Hopkins Reliability Engineer


NAME: Sean Hopkins
AGE: 25
LIVES: Chicago, Illinois
UNIVERSITY: Mechanical Engineering, University of Illinois

Sean wanted to be a fire fighter, a pilot, a race car driver and even an astronaut. He was captivated by speed, exploration and the world around him. He wanted to know how everything worked. “My mom told me what an engineer was when I was five years old. I knew at that exact moment that one day I would become one.”

In school, Sean was drawn to both art and science. “Art was one of my favorite subjects; it allowed me to be creative – to make something from nothing.” Science was a creative outlet too, but it also allowed him to channel his inherent competiveness. “I loved science, but every year I would lose to the same group of kids at the science fair. Third grade was my time to shine. From third to eighth grade, I won every single science fair! I even went on to represent my school in a city-wide science competition.”

At Dyson, Sean is a mechanical engineer. His responsibilities are many, but the crux of his position is reliability testing for both the U.S. and Canada. It is extremely hands-on. “The best part of my job is the environment – one of constant learning. There is never any restriction on how we go about doing work; we simply strive for improvements in everything we do.”

Sean is most fascinated by mechanical engineering because it is the most versatile. If he wanted to branch out into chemical, electrical or aerospace, his degree gives him the foundation and ability to do that. “With a background in mechanical engineering, I can confidently say that I know how the world works 99.9% of the time; it makes me feel really proud of myself.”

When he is not testing a Dyson machine, Sean is probably speeding. He was introduced to his first road bike at 13. “That feeling cannot be replicated – the speed was such a rush.” But his love of fast things does not end with bicycles. He has still have not given up on one of his childhood dreams. “If the circumstances were right, I would be an F1 race car driver.”