Engineering a Career: Alex Macomber ’10

It may not look like the robots from the movies, but electrical engineer Alex Macomber ’10 can attest that his orange robot gets the job done. When a company receives an order, the robot delivers the appropriate mobile shelving unit to an employee who packs, ships, and completes the order.

Alex Macomber '10Macomber is a senior services engineer at Kiva Systems, where he helps companies automate their fulfillment system at warehouses. Kiva Systems, which was acquired by Amazon in March 2012, provides companies with an integrated system of robots, shelving units, and software. Alex leads the team that implements the software and builds the robots and shelving units. He manages contractors and junior engineers and keeps projects on track and on deadline.

As part of Kiva’s professional services, Macomber spends a lot of time on the road. “It’s great because there’s a lot of variety. I might be on a project for 3-6 months but then move somewhere else for a week,” he says. He’s worked in Germany, San Francisco, Kansas City and Seattle.

Macomber earned his bachelor’s in applied physics from Saint Anselm and through the college’s 3-2 engineering physics program, earned his bachelor’s in engineering at the University of Notre Dame in Ill. Having two degrees gives him a bigger professional network and career flexibility. He’s also played rugby at Saint Anselm, Notre Dame, and now, while traveling, all around the country.

The college’s 3-2 engineering program resides in the physics department but combines foundational engineering courses with a liberal arts education. It prepares students to go into the engineering field of their choice whether electrical, mechanical, civil, or chemical.

Students study at Saint Anselm for three years and then complete two more years at one of four partner schools such as the University of Notre Dame. Graduates have held positions in the fields of engineering at organizations such as IBM, Texas Instruments, Raytheon, and the University of Michigan.