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Amy Elliott '14

Alumni Leader Spotlight

Amy Elliott '14

3D Printing Scientist, Oak Ridge National Laboratory

I'm a mom of 2, and a 3D printing fanatic! I have several 3D printers in my house and love making things for myself and others. I've also been on a few TV shows, including 7 seasons of the Science Channel's Outrageous Acts of Science. During my time at Virginia Tech, I was on a reality show on The Discovery Channel called "The Big Brain Theory," which was a competition for engineers. In general I try to get on camera as much as possible so that I can be a role model for girls interested in STEM and trades. I'm currently a scientist at Oak Ridge National Lab, and I research advanced manufacturing technologies, mostly 3D printing. I love working with scientists from other fields of expertise to solve problems. I have several patents filed, pending, and licensed, which is one of the most rewarding parts of my job.


How Virginia Tech equipped me for the 'real world'...
The professors at Virginia Tech are just the best. They are really connected with the latest innovations in their field, which really prepared me for the 'real world.'

Best part of being a Virginia Tech alum...
Being part of a network of really outstanding professionals.

Best advice I've gotten....
The guys aren't holding their gender on their shoulders, so neither should you.

A key habit, practice, or skill, that's important for success in my industry...
Making friends! I have seen how forming genuine relationships with people has really helped our research grow together.

A person who has inspired me...
Dr. Chris Williams (a Virginia Tech professor) continues to inspire me with his passion, kindness, and amazing work ethic.

If I had a superpower, it would be...
Flying. Definitely Flying. I would go everywhere!

My no-fail, go-for-it motivational song...
"Shake it off" by Taylor Swift

Last book I read...
"You're More Than a Diversity Hire" by Angelique Adams, PhD.

Favorite way to end the day...
Love cuddling with my kiddos and reading a book.

Fondest Virginia Tech memory or tradition...
I love Virginia Tech in the spring and fall. I love walking around, soaking in the beautiful campus.

Words of encouragement to a current Virginia Tech student...
Keep working hard, and you'll be prepared for the amazing opportunities that will come your way!

A cause I'm most passionate about...
I'm very passionate about educating girls about STEM and trades. I'm even starting a book series about it! The first book will be published this summer (2022).

The most formative experience I've had...
I learned a lot being on a reality show where we were building things. We got to design and build 8 devices that most people don't get to do in a lifetime.

Top of my bucket list...
Travel to France and eat all the pastries!

My hidden talent...
I'm really good at drawing things in Powerpoint. Like freakishly good.

My favorite quote...
"if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly." - Theodore Roosevelt

Something very few people know about me...
I used to be painfully shy and awkward. Now I'm just awkward!

What is one thing about Virginia Tech you hope never changes?
I hope the campus always looks like Hogwarts :)


Media Contact:
Lindsey Haugh (540) 231-6959
lhaugh@vt.edu