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Fleflections frorn Three
Early-Career Acousticians
Sarah M. Young Three early career ucousticiuris from three separate professional paths reflect on
Addmsr their budding careers and provide insight for student and future acousticiuris look-
Department of Physics and ‘"3 "’ f"”°W 5"“
A5“'°“°“"Y The change from student life to career life is one of the biggest transitions a stu-
B"‘B}”““ Y°““8 U““’“'5“Y dent must face, and the Acoustical Society of America (ASA) Student Council
N203 ESC is on a quest to provide resources for the student body of the ASA. With this
P‘°V°’U‘“h“6°2 ' ' d ur ('1 ' 1 r r ' ' f td td' td t'l
USA in min , is ar ic e is par o a con inuing series o s u en - irec e ar ic es
(acousticstodavorg/student-council-acoustical-society-america), c ente red
E"“"1-' around the needs and interests of students, including how to navigate the rich and
53'3hmY°““g24@gT““‘l-°°"‘ diverse field of acoustics. One of the often underappreciated benefits of acoustics
is the number and variety of career opportunities available to the budding acous-
TYl°1’ 1- F1Y““ tician. Despite this grand lot of available careers, there are still many challenges
A,1,1,e_n_. and obstacles that the enterprising student/young professional may encounter
Dennmnen‘ 0fMeChaniCa1Engineering while stepping foot on their career path. In an effort to identify and elucidate
Universny “Midngnn some such pathways, the Student Council reached out to three early-career ac-
1231 Ben] Avenne ousticians to learn a little bit about their goals and experiences and to share their
Ann Anmn Midngnn 43109 combined wisdom with others interested in pursuing similar, or even wholly dif-
USA ferent, acoustic ambitions.
E '1:
LiaYflYm@gman:l:n Nleer. the Interviewees
The interviewees are Jazz Myers (IM), who works as a physicist at the Naval Air
Warfare Center Aircraft Division (NAWCAD), Patuxent River Naval Air Station
in Lexington, MD; Ioelle Suits (IS), an associate at Cross-Spectrum Acoustics in
Salt Lake City, UT; and Dr. Shima Abadi (SA), an assistant professor of mechani-
cal engineering at the University of Washington, Bothell. These three interview-
ees, whose careers span from systems engineer to consultant to academic profes-
sor, represent a valuable cross section of the acoustics job market. And although
there are certainly many additional acoustical career opportunities available, the
responses below provide some valuable insight for realizing the job that, for you,
sounds best.
IrVhat does your job entail and what type afrespnnsibilities do you hold.’
IM: I am a sonar systems engineer. I analyze data from underwater sonar missions
to assess system performance and develop new signal processing algorithms, pri-
marily using MATLAB. I compile briefs and regularly give presentations about
fleet usage of sonar systems, system performance, and new algorithm develop-
ment. The algorithms I work on almost all have the objective of reducing clutter
and increasing accurate detections. Another aspect of my job is numerically re-
constructing the acoustical environment of the subsurface ocean to predict sound
propagation and sonar performance.
@2018Amuszimlsociezyapamerim. Allrights reserved. volume 14, issues 1 173112013 | Annuslzlcl Tnday | 37

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