Alumni of the Week “David Kogut”


David Kogut

David Kogut is currently a mechanical engineering student at Grand Canyon University who is set to graduate in April 2020. Born in Buffalo, New York, David moved to Phoenix, Arizona when he was just one year old and started karate at age seven. From elementary to high school, David thoroughly enjoyed training and made many new life-long friends. As he advanced further into his training, David had the humble opportunity to compete in several Arizona state championships, the Reno national championship and the Tokyo world championship in 2016. David would go on to place 1st in kumite in the state championship for two years in a row and had the honor to spar with a prestigious Japanese karate school in the world championship with teammates Parker Frist and Ian Goodson.

Davids favorite day at Mountainside Martial Arts center were every Wednesday, where students could spar with their peers and learn new techniques every week. Training with Sensei Rick has granted David many helpful skills such as organization, respect, how to remain calm under pressure and much more. One thing that has always stuck with David is when Sensei Rick told him that, "excuses are tools of incompetence". This helped David not only with his training in the dojo, but in his life as a mechanical engineer as well.

David has many goals he would like to achieve after his graduation and hopes to return to training in order to earn Nidan rank. He also has a strong passion for advancing space technology and will be pursuing a masters degree in aerospace technology in the near future. David hopes to one day work as a mechanical engineer for Boeing, NASA or SpaceX and is very excited for the years ahead of him. He hopes that many students in the future receive the valuable lessons and life skills from the wise sensei's at Mountainside Martial Arts Center just as he did.