Welcome back to Camp Promise Spotlight series! This month we are talking with long time Camp Promise-East camper, Trey Latulippe. Trey has been to CPE close to every year it’s been around, so if you’ve ever gone chances are you’ve met him. He’s kind and smart and truly embodies what camp is all about. He’s even gone the extra mile and gotten a camp tattoo – how cool is that?
- Name: Trey Latulippe
- Camper or Volunteer: Camper
- Camps Attended: East and Connect
- Years in Attendance: 8 years
- Cabin(s): Black
- TV Show: Doctor Who
- Song: Africa by Toto
- Game: Dungeons & Dragons (yes, I truly am the nerdiest of nerdom)
- Talk or Text: Text
- Place to Travel: 1994, when I was still a kid 😉
To the people who know you through camp, they’ll know camp is really important to you. But some people don’t know who you are the other 51 weeks of the year. Can you tell us a little bit about your background outside of camp, what did you study in school?
I’ve actually received multiple degrees. I have both a Bachelors and Masters in Mechanical Engineering, and a Bachelors and Masters in Computer Science, along with a minor in Math, from the University of New Hampshire. I did some internships while at school that were about programming.
After school though I knew my body just could not keep up with a job (my education itself had already worn away so much of me) so I decided it be best to focus of my health, while at the same time continuing my education by self teaching in different areas that interested me or also helped along with my current levels of education, anywhere from adding more programming languages that I am capable of programming, to teaching myself a new language, and just keeping up in general with what I was taught in college.
After all, for example with the case of the highest level of mathematics I learned while at college, along with many other areas I was taught, it’s a case of if you don’t use it, you lose it. Just like with learning a language, after you learn it, you still have to maintain that level of knowledge with said language by keeping up with it on a daily basis, otherwise you will start to lose what you’ve learned. Currently I do have the offer and potential of taking a very small job which would be perfect for me because it would allow me to only work when I feel like I can.
So your education and skills are very important to you! Can you tell us about some interesting skills you have?
While I do need some physical help from a 2nd or 3rd person, and I have to be covered in a fire retardant blanket due to all the sparks flying, I am fully proficient in working in a metal machining lab. My college’s engineering department has several competitive teams, ranging from various events (speed, efficiency, crash safety) with scaled down formula 1 car racing to hovercraft racing – we had roughly 10-12 racing devices at any time – I helped create and design from scratch the front “crumple” bumper design of the racing car we were working on that year, along with creating a couple handmade specialty metal tools we required to work on our several various racing teams items. We even had our own massive, half the width of the engineering building, wind tunnel that we used to test our various racing craft, that we all had to get certified in using.
Another project that was among my favorites, and I was quite proud that we got to work, was that in my Thermodynamics class, the Professor was also a fighter pilot in the US Navy. This was our main project of the year that we were separated into groups of 4 and were each given our own F-16 jet engine. This was the “gifted” class of only 16 people, hence only 4 groups and only needed 4 engines (which was good because that’s all my Professor was allowed to borrow haha), they are quite large and powerful, but thankfully our engineering building was incredibly large, and we had several “maintenance bays”, so we used 4 bays for 2 months – 1 bay for each engine – and then myself and my 3 other group members had to dismantle the jet engine we were given, aside from a few key important parts beyond our knowledge, and then fully reassemble it, and at the end of that class, aside from a very extensive paper on it, we had to have a fully working F-16 jet engine.
So I am proud to say that the group of myself and 3 others, again aside from a few key important parts, disassembled and reassembled into full working order an F-16 jet engine. Even at minimal thrust the engines, when being trialed, had to be run outside in our large open area (think of the engineering building as a box shape, and in the middle was a large completely open and paved area). We had to secure down each engine using 12 insanely large bolts to the concrete, and again, even at the bare minimum thrust, not only did the entire campus hear when we throttled up each engine, but some towns miles down the road in various directions could hear it too! Just hearing and seeing that raw power of the engine, and knowing that myself and 3 others took it apart and put it all back together in fully working order, that was a sight to behold, and was one of my favorite times while at UNH.
One of the large interests I’ve had since middle school was building computers from scratch. While I’ve gradually grown from being able to fully work on them myself, to now requiring some physical help for the manual labor portion, I still love computers. It’s funny my mom says I’m to computers like a kid is to bringing home stray animals: I’m always getting another computer to come home and “live with me.”
And when I’m not doing all of that, I really like watching sci-fi shows. Old and new, everything from the original “X-Files” to the newer “The Expanse” I just love the thought of there being some other life forms in this large universe of ours, or how far out into space the human race can potentially reach in the distant future and what amazing science and gadgets we will have available to use then.
You’ve been going to camp for a very long time. What are some of your favorite camp memories to share?
To start, even though we had known each other through MDA camp, it wasn’t until CPE that Molly and I became fully certified boyfriend and girlfriend, that’s certainly one of my top favorites. Camp really made this possible. And of course swimming has to be number 2!
But aside from that all it’s hard to choose a favorite camp memory because for me what always made camp special, was the people that were there, not what we were doing. Some of my favorite times were when a bunch of the older campers and some of the counselors had some free time at night before bed, and we would use that time to just look up at the stars and just talk. The topics for the discussions were endless, but the feeling of being together, and having close conversations, those were some of the best times. And the people: no matter where we were, what we were doing, it was the people around that made CPE special.
Last question, how would you describe camp in one phrase? What does camp mean to you?
Easy. Heaven on earth.