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my doctoral studies in 2003 and have been an active member of the ASA for more than 20 years.
It is important to note that my training in acoustics occurred predominantly after completing my under- graduate degree. However, if I did not take it on myself to learn about biomedical ultrasound as an undergraduate student, I never would have specialized in the area as a graduate student and I never would have joined the ASA.
Based on my experience, the CIRDI acknowledged that the ASA needs to create more opportunities for students of color to get introduced to acoustics and acoustics- related professions. The committee proposed that the ASA establish and manage a summer research and intern- ship program in acoustics and acoustics-related fields for undergraduate students of color. In addition to funding the students, the ASA will provide a short course in acoustics in preparation of the summer experience.
Furthermore, ASA members will host virtual gatherings for the students to foster a community and discuss the academic and professional pathways available in acoustics and acous- tics-related fields. The American Institute for Physics (AIP) awarded the ASA seed funding from its Diversity Action Fund to support launching the program in 2021. For many students, the summer program may be their first substan- tive experience with concepts, technologies, or processes involving acoustics. A positive experience both technically and culturally may serve as a first step toward pursuing a career in a field related to acoustics and becoming a member of the ASA. We are seeking mentors committed to diversi- fying their profession to host these aspiring young scholars. We plan to foster community among the mentors as well by hosting workshops and virtual gatherings to discuss and share best practices for mentoring students from under- represented groups. Although not required, mentors and/ or companies willing to fund a student will enable the ASA to include more students in the program. More informa- tion about the program and expectations for mentors can be found on the ASA Diversity Initiatives page (available at If you are inter- ested, please contact Tyrone Porter (
The summer program is part of a broader strategic plan crafted by the CIRDI to increase the representation of per- sons of color in acoustics-related careers and in the ASA.
The plan includes various initiatives and activities designed
to increase interaction and communication with students and professionals of color, such as working with faculty and administrators at minority-serving institutions to raise awareness of acoustics-related professions; organiz- ing workshops and forums on topics related to diversity, equity, and inclusion; and creating a webpage to highlight persons of color in acoustics and acoustics-related fields. Please visit the ASA Diversity Initiatives page for more information and for opportunities to volunteer and imple- ment the various initiatives.
Porter, T. (2020). Addressing the lack of Black members in the ASA. Acoustics Today 16(4), 75-76.
Scott, E. K. E. (2020). The need for a new normal. Acoustics Today 16(4), 77-79.
 Contact Information
Tyrone Porter
Department of Biomedical Engineering The University of Texas at Austin
107 W. Dean Keeton Street
Austin, Texas 78715, USA
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