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STEM on FIRE
19 minutes | Oct 6, 2019
96: PHD Nanomedicine – Embedding messages into Nano Particles – Joy Wolfram
Joy Wolfram Earned her undergrad in Biology and a PHD in Nanomedicine. Joy’s mission is to use science to save lives. [1:25] Careers with undergrad or graduate degree in Biology could be a writer for scientific journals or magazines. You could also go get a law degree and work on patents in the Biological arena. [2:30] Joy describes what Nanomedicine is and how it spans physics and chemistry disciplines. [4:40] What a day looks like running a research lab. [6:00] How did Joy make the decision to go into Nanomedicine and her specific area of expertise along with what has her fired up! [10:00] An Ah-Ha moment from Joy – at 11 years old her dog got sick and saw biology in action and from there created her own little lab at home. [13:00] Getting through college – Have confidence in your unique ideas, ask questions, network and find a mentor [14:40] Key skills – you need to be comfortable with failure. [16:30] Best advice – be part of something bigger than yourself, and refuse to take no for an answer. Joy’s Lab: Link Joy’s TedX talk: Link Book recommendation: The Immortal Life by Henrietta Lacks. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
18 minutes | Sep 22, 2019
95: PHD In Quantum Chemistry and Quantum Mechanics-From Professor to Sales-Eva Vankova
Eva Vankova earned a PHD in Quantum Mechanics and Quantum Chemistry. She worked as a professor, travelled to different areas of the world and then took a position in sale at Exxon Mobile [1:50] Eva goes into a little background about Quantum Chemistry – studying the smallest particles around us and they do not behave exactly like matter. This science is very much related to math as well as related to philosophy. Quantum chemistry is use in technology like lasers, magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). [4:50] The difference between Chemistry and Quantum Chemistry – Quantum is more in the direction of Physics and Math. [6:30] Do you need a PHD? Yes, a PHD may be needed to really pursue Quantum Chemistry. [7:10] Eve went from Teaching at the college level to sales at Exxon Mobil. She likes to learn and work with a group of people and teach. Eva learns a lot from just listening and when you explain it, explain it simply not in a complicated fashion. This translates directly into sales. [11:00] and ah ha moment – a simple book on relativity when she was a child. Her father was an engineer and she was an only child and passed his love for math and physics to Eva. [14:50] Lightening round – best advice – too work hard and to be honest. And a book is any works from Karel Capek – he invented the word Robot in is book R.U.R. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/R.U.R [17:00] Parting piece of guidance – do sports! Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
22 minutes | Jul 21, 2019
94: PHD Biomolecular Structure and Design – Wants to make the world a better place – David Beck
Dr. David Beck earned a PHD in Biomolecular Structure and Design and is the eScience Institute Director of Research and a Research Associate Professor in Chemical Engineering. Dr. Beck has been associated with eScience since 2009, formerly serving as the Director of Research for the Life Sciences. Beyond his biology and chemistry domain expertise, Dr. Beck provides experience in scientific data analytics and mining, parallel programming techniques for data intensive computing and high performance computing applications, and general software design & engineering support. [1:10] What does post-doc mean: undergrad->PHD->post-doc (2 to 3 years to polish your skills): Biomolecular structure and Design (DNA/RNA/Protein design). How can you design new proteins/molecules. [3:05] Why start with computer science. Grew up when computers were becoming a commodity, so knew he wanted to do something with computers. His internship shaped his direction into biology/chemistry. The degree today would be bioinformatics, using computing with biology. [5:45] How David is leveraging his computer science degree, they use computers to find hidden structures in experimental data around biomolecules. [8:40] what is bio-informatics – a lot of data is generated, you need to know the right statistical models to apply to the data. [9:20] Opportunities exists in the pharmaceutical companies and also design microorganisms to remediate a contaminated site are some examples for careers. [12:10] What has David fired up is the broad adoption of data science methods in all domains of technology. There is a data revolution – called data science. [13:20] Getting through college: try new things, don’t get stuck with just the classes to get your degree expand outside of the core classes. We joked about gaming, but check out Foldit Game [15:50] ah ha moment – during graduate work was focused on simulation of proteins, he wrote those simulations. So he thought if we simulated thousands of molecule simulations and generated tons of data – but in the end the data was not really knowledge, they just had a lot of data. [18:40] – Best advice – you are not an impostor, this is a self-inflicted wound – it is all in your head and no true. And a habit – make sure there is something everyday in your job that you really love to do. Favorite Books both by Richard Rhodes: “Making the Atomic Bomb” “Energy: A Human Story” Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
22 minutes | Jul 7, 2019
93: PHD Biomedical – Nano Technology For Medicine and Drug Delivery – Alessandro Grattoni
Alessandro Grattoni earned a PHD in Biomedical Engineering and a Masters in Mechanical Engineering and is a Professor and Chairman of the Department of Nanomedicine at Houston Methodist Research Institute: Houston Methodist Research Institute [0:00] Goes into what Nano-Particles is one of the fields of nano-technology – little engineered molecules; you are essentially engineering matter. [2:45] Why a Mechanical Engineering undergrad vs a Biomedical undergraduate degree. He had a passion from racing bikes and really liked Mechanical but after his masters in Mechanical Engineering, he really wanted to apply this to life sciences. [3:50] Going a little more in-depth – it is a very broad field and there are a lot of opportunities for research. [5:20] Is a PHD required? No, can start research after a Bachelor’s degree or Master’s degree. [6:15] One thing we don’t know about Nano – an area to develop new engineering technologies at the microscopic scale. [7:30] What would a day look like? Spend a lot of time of learning new techniques, very multidisciplinary. Try to get an internship in a lab. [8:50] What has Alessandro fired up – opportunity to work with cells for drug delivery mechanism. Use cells and engineer it to respond with other molecules. [11:50] An ah-ha moment – spent a lot of time training for bike racing and determined that he could study and do racing/training at the same time. The 2nd ah-ha moment – attended a talk on nano-technology and he immediately realized that was where he wanted to focus. [15:00] Getting through college – take an opportunity to travel the world and do internships is different laboratories. Get to know all the different areas in Nano-Technology. [18:00] Couple attributes for succes – need to work to figure out your path forward, creativity, commitment, and never give up. [19:00] Best advice is get serious and start studying and a personal habit is being consistent and focused. A book he would recommend is “The Sky Below” by Scott Parazynski Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
24 minutes | Jun 30, 2019
92: PHD Chemical Engineering – Stretchable Electronics – Michael Dickey
Michael Dickey earned a PHD in Chemical Engineering for the University of Texas at Austin and is a professor at NC state and has experiences with Nano Fabrication, liquid metals and stretchable electronics: The Dickey Group at NC State [0:45] Little background of Michael – in high school he took a tour of a clean room, where electronics are made, and learned that computer chips are all done with chemical processes and that had an impact on his choice of majors in college – chemical engineering. [3:20] Goes into the difference between Chemistry and Chemical Engineering – Chemist come up with the chemical reactions and chemical engineer works on the processes of these chemical reactions to build at scale. [8:50] Stretchable Electronic discussion – one example is putting electronics directly on the skin, also fordable electronics and putting electronics into clothing. They are using liquid metal – Gallium straight of the periodic table. [15:30] Getting through college – he has always been self-motivating. In college he took on a lot of activities, and some he was not passionate about – try to go deeper on a smaller number of activities would be his advice. [17:40] Attributes in students who are the most successful; mature, self-starters, driven to do well, curious, strong math background, ask questions in class and come to office hours. You also need to develop good communication skills. [19:20] Best advice – value of hard work and treat others the way you want to be treated and a favorite book is about the history of the periodic table The Disappearing Spoon by Sam Kean. [21:30] Parting piece of guidance – take all advice for what it is worth, just someone else’s opinion – not all advice is great advice. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
19 minutes | Jun 9, 2019
91: Aerospace Engineer – You will fail a test or class along the way – Erin Young
Erin Young earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Aerospace Engineering from the University of Notre Dame and works as a flight controls engineer at Boom – Supersonic. [1:10] What are careers available for Aerospace Engineering? – 2 paths space or aviation. – Erin went the Aviation route while at first thinking she was going the space route after going to space camp at the age of 13. [3:15] What do you actually focus on during college? – focus on aerodynamics of flight – similar to mechanical engineering, a lot of fluid dynamics. [4:20] Specific systems for supersonic (faster than speed of sound) aircraft vs standard commercial aircraft. The aircraft at supersonic speeds; everything heats up – they have to work to cool everything down. They have to fly through shock waves at a continual basis. When you break through the sound barrier, it is a continuous shock wave. [7:30] Are there enough careers for a very specific STEM degree like Aeropace? – since it is very close to mechanical you can flow back to mechanical but would be very tough to go from mechanical to Aerospace. [9:10] Fired up about the future of supersonic speed – today we still travel at the same speeds we did back in the 1950’s! The concord (first supersonic jet) was very expensive to fly – the Boom solution will be very fuel efficient. [11:40] Ah-ha moment – interesting that up to graduation it is a very clear path, but after that the roadmap is very wide open – the ah-ha moment was when she realized the number of paths she could pursue [13:10] Getting through college: have a good support network – her first calculus test was a 53, and she failed it. The support network was so very important to get through that – she felt like she was not cut out for engineering after that test. [16:20] Best advice – focus on the fundamentals. Habit – always ask questions and use Onenote (or Evernote) to write everything down. Book Erin recommends Fly Girls by Keith O’Brien. [17:30] parting advice – get hands on experience! Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
19 minutes | Jun 2, 2019
90: Mechanical/Robotics/Computer Science – Nothing Cooler than Being a Woman in STEM – Alexis Block
Alexis Block earned a Bachelor’s Degree BS in Mechanical and a Masters in Robotics from the university of Pennsylvania and her final degree will be a PHD in Computer Science. Her research: “HuggieBot” [0:50] Her undergrad is in mechanical, but her PHD is in Computer Science, how is that possible? – Her first programming class was during her sophomore year in college, and her masters in Robotics blended mechanical, electrical, and computer science. [2:10] Goes into the interactions of robots with humans and how people react to the robot. [4:00] Alexis talks about some of the experiments she ran – people prefer to be squeezed somewhat tightly by a robot and what she plans to do after her research. [8:20] She takes us through her journey of college and how she found a great advisor [9:40] What does a typical day look like for Alexis – in her research, every day is different [10:55] What has Alexis really fired up today? the ability to use robotics for social good. [11:30] Ah-ha moment – in high school they had to do a science project and made it all the way to nationals – that is what really was needed to invalidate what everyone was saying about how it is so nerdy to be in STEM as a female. [13:20] Getting through college – take risks and follow your interests. There is no shame in asking for help. [16:20] Best advice – don’t let anybody tell you can’t. A habit is to take breaks to refresh and clear your head. And a book she recommends is “Getting More” Stuart Diamond [17:50] Parting guidance – asking for help does not make you weak, it shows how courageous and driven you are. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
23 minutes | May 19, 2019
89: Mechanical Engineer – From Sales to STEM Ambassador – Jay Flores
Jay Flores earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and is heavily involved in STEM advocacy. [0:0] Started out in Sales at Rockwell Automation but over the last 3 to 4 years has been an ambassador for STEM. Jay is very passionate about helping kids find passion in STEM. [1:20] Why Jay chose to go directly into sales out of college – through his internship’s he got clarity and what is strengths were from the book “Strength Finders” by Tom Rath. He also took on some side projects within the sales organization. (This goes into the concept of architecting your own career). [3:20] Are you wasting your STEM degree by going into Sales? – Many of these jobs require a lot of technical aptitude, so no you are not “wasting” your STEM degree by going into sales. You can have tremendous impact in many industries. We always talk about the good things, one of the challenges with sales, especially when you are in an manufacturing side, is if your products fails and the plant stops manufacturing, customer can get very upset during this time. [8:40] Very important to grow your skills in other areas that may interest you. [10:40] What is a STEM ambassador? Follow Jay on Instagram (@jayfloresinspires) and Twitter (@jayflores2032) [13:10] Getting through college successfully – he knew he wanted to do engineering but did not do a lot of research. He was able to eliminate some classes and was only thinking about graduating early vs doing what he really loved. [19:10] What has Jay fired up today – 40,000 people showed up for the FIRST Robotics competition in Houston, TX. [21:00] Parting piece of Guidance – Kids are not driven by money at an early age, need to find the area of STEM where the student is already interested in and bridge that gap between interest and STEM. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
20 minutes | May 12, 2019
88: Chemical Engineering in Additive Manufacturing 3D Printing – Stacey Delvecchio
Stacey Delvecchio earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering and is heavily involved in additive manufacturing (3D printing). [1:10] goes into 3D printing a bit and how chemical engineering degree fits into 3D printing and manufacturing – as long as you continue to learn – opportunities will become available. [4:20] Ways to investigate on 3D printing – youtube, linked in, pretty much anywhere on the web. — search for additive manufacturing . [5:30] One thing we do not know about additive manufacturing – there are many metal parts being manufactured this way with high quality and there are many parts that the only way to make it is with additive manufacturing. [8:10] How important to start getting involved in organizations – Stacey thinks this is very valuable. [10:00]} What has Stacey really fired up are the use cases for 3D printing – something that has actually been design for additive manufacturing. [11:20] An ah – ha moment – How 3D printing in space may help with mining planets in the future. [14:20] Getting through college – wishes she would have taken some more risks especially when doing internships/co-ops. [16:15] Best advice – be present – do not multitask – when in a meeting or at an event focus on that. And a personal habit is doing a lot of reading. And her favorite app is “good reads” and a book she would recommend is “The Notorius Ruth Bader Ginsburg (RBG)” by Irin Carman [19:10] parting guidance is it is OK if you don’t know what you really want to do. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
20 minutes | May 5, 2019
87: Bio engineering, Biomedical, Mechanical – Try as many new things – Juhanna Robberts
Juhanna Roberts earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering and a Masters in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania and is in procurement at a large shoe manufactures, Nike. [0:40] Juhanna also has a minor in engineering entrepreneurship, and has played rugby and Australian rules football. [1:15] She goes into the sourcing/buying area which is not a traditional STEM position. She found it during the rotation program at Nike. This was a new challenge for her. Team work is very important and that is a skill that is developed during your college days in STEM. [4:45] Does she miss doing design, sometimes, but she can always go back and do design at any point. [5:40] what are some things she really enjoys being in the procurement/sourcing environment. She really loves being in a team environment and be able to communicate back in non-engineering terms. She also likes the negotiating side to build that as a new skill. A STEM degree is very viable even if you want to pursue a business path. A skill you learn in STEM is the ability to think and solve problems. [9:35] what is one thing she really does not like about procurement – she misses some of the hands on aspects of a traditional STEM career. [10:25] An Ah-Ha moment – engineering is much more than just learning information, she realized that engineering teaches you a way to think and that is what business want and need. [12:55] If you are on the edge between STEM and a business degree, would highly recommend STEM and you don’t have to get straight A’s. [14:10] Getting through college – wish she knew that everyone will struggle and you will probably fail some exams and take some classes out of your major. Also having some artificial intelligence classes would be helpful. [16:30] Best advice, never lie and surround yourself with people that are smarter than you. And a habit is frequent exercise. Favorite app is Yelp and favorite book Fly Honey Bee Fly by Eva Robberts-Vankova, her mother! [18:50] Parting piece of guidance – Try as many new things as you can! Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
22 minutes | Apr 28, 2019
86: Digital Design Architect – Electrical Engineering – Do what you commit to – Nathanael Huffman
Nathanael Huffman earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from Purdue University and is a Digital Design Architect at a large medical device manufacturer. [1:45] Why electrical engineering – had always been interested in computers, has done some programming in high school, and he enjoyed electrical physics. [2:35] One thing we may not know is that you may end up doing a lot of paperwork and testing. Many times a lot of trial and error is needed to get the designs working properly. [4:35] Describes what an FPGA (Field Programmable Gate Array) is and then goes into what resources you could utilize to go investigate. StackOverflow FPGA [7:00] One thing that He does not like about Electrical Engineering – there is a lot of delayed gratification when designing electronics whereas software design is a little more instant. [8:30] What has Nathanael really fired up today? – In the tech space, he really loves FPGAs. [10:20] If picking one programming language to go off and learn, what would it be? Python Nathanael uses it daily. Python stack overlow link StackOverflow [11:20] An ah-ah moment – found out in freshman year it was a lot of math, was trying to figure out how it all applies to the real world, he started to second guess if Electrical Engineering was the right choice, but after his first internship he realized that it is not all math. Had he not gotten the internship and realized what real engineering was about he may not have actually finished up in engineering. [13:50] Getting through college: go to all your classes and get your homework done earl. Find study groups. [16:35] Attribute needed to be successful going from college into a professional career – problem solving with scientific method. You need to have a positive “can do” attitude and be a team player. [18:00] Best advice is “Do what you commit to” will make you exceed expectations. Basically do what you say you are going to. He also reads a lot and a book he recommends is Great at Work by Morten Hansen. [20:40] Parting advice: Look really hard for internship opportunities as early as you can. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
15 minutes | Apr 21, 2019
85: Epidemiology and Biostatistics – Stop Starting and Start Finishing! – Rebecca Carter
Rebecca Carter earned a Bachelor’s in Psychology and PHD in Epidemiology and Biostatistics and is a Post-Doctoral researcher at Ohio State. [0:0] Rebecca is a Post-doctoral researcher in cardiovascular medicine and goes into what careers are available in Epidemiology – you could work for the CDC – Center for Disease Control and Prevention as well as other government positions. [2:25] Bio-statistics, it is the statistics for medical purposes. [3:05] Bachelors in Psychology – she actually did Marine Biology research at Boston University while in high school. [6:25] Rebecca takes us through her journey of research – she uses Evernote to keep of information and if you are interested in doing research while in high school, you should create an online presence and portfolio before reaching out to your local university. She discusses the EIS – Epidemic Intelligence Services program and some other programs are the AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship. [9:30] what has Rebecca fired up today is the use of statistical significance, the P-value. [11:30] Heading to college – no one will train you, but you, and you need to stay organized and to think about the next day , and ask yourself – what am I avoiding? – that is probably the most important thing to do. [13:00] best advice received – stop starting an start finishing and a personal habit is to focus on the process and not on the end results. Favorite app is Evernote/Onenote and a good book is “The Artist’s Way” by Julia Cameron. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
18 minutes | Apr 14, 2019
84: Physics and PHD in Solar Physics studying the Sun – Stephanie Yardley
Stephanie Yardley earned a Bachelor’s and Master’s Degree in Physics and a PHD in Solar Physics and is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of St. Andrews in Scottland. [0:40] She is focused and studying the eruptions that come from the sun, and those eruptions can disrupt technology on earth. There is the solar wind, solar flares, and eruptions. Problems with satellites, GPS and radio black outs are just a short list of the problems these eruptions can cause. [2:40] how did she decide on Physics? She really like applied math – she went on a trip to the Johnson space center in Texas and meet some of the astronauts and was hooked at that point. [5:45] If you like the solar systems, and Astor-Physics – what are options outside of the research and the academic world? You could go into the engineering side, build instruments for satellites, space weather forecasting, energy sector to name a few. [7:15] Fun fact; the sun light takes about 8-1/2 minutes to arrive to the earth, but it takes 100,000 years for the photons (light) to get from the center of the sun to the surface of the sun before making their way to Earth. [8:50] What has Stephanie fired up? — Space travel is becoming closer for everyone, and technology is catching up where science fiction is becoming closer to reality. [10:05] An ah ha moment was here amazing trip to the Johnson space center and they were able to simulate experiments between the control center and the ship on a mission. [11:50] Getting through college – take every opportunity that comes along and persevere. [15:10] Best advice – take every opportunity, and a habit is to persevere. She likes the night sky apps App: Sun App Book “15 Million Degrees” by Lucie Green Twitter @Slyardley [17:00] Parting guidance: just don’t give up. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
22 minutes | Apr 7, 2019
83: Computer Science and Entrepreneur: You need to architect your career – Chris Smith
Chris Smith earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science from Michigan State University and an MBA in Entrepreneurship from the University of Minnesota and is the Director of Personal Healthcare Technology Innovation. [0:30] Director of Innovation, wearable devices, drone delivery, AI, Augmented reality to name few. [2:13] Chris hires new college grads, so we get into what attributes he looks for – need to have the technical foundation of course, need to be able to work well together, everything is done jointly, across the enterprise. Ambitious but to the point where you put yourself ahead of the team. You need to be open to new ideas, and be a very good listener. [4:10] Advice on the type of STEM degree to pursue: Technology is so broad and growing all the time, figure out what plays well in your persona. [6:10] In STEM, you have to study a lot, how do you develop the skills like communication. The STEM curriculum builds this in when you are forced to work in teams. If you are nervous speaking in front of a group, then dive into that and find some activities to build those skills up. In the end you have to be well rounded to work well with others. YOU are responsible for building these skills. [8:30] Chris talks a bit about the rotation program available at United Healthcare Rotation Program New grads come in with a fresh mind and new ideas, how to apply new technology [11:18] What has Chris fired up? Artificial Intelligence it is so broad, and very exciting – how can you free up time for the doctor to actually be able to spend more time with the patient. Try to go deep into an area of focus vs going broad. [15:00] Ah-ha moment is when he realized that no one was going to spoon feed his success in his careers. You have to be prepared for when opportunities present themselves. [17:00] We talk about architecting your career – you have to control your career path. [20:26] Reach out to Chris Smith and some parting advice: Work harder than you think you should, you can either start now working hard or work harder later in life. You also need to market yourself, how you carry yourself, that is your commercial and your reputation will follow. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
20 minutes | Mar 31, 2019
82: Civil Engineer – Was not aware of STEM until after her first degree – Mel Butcher
Mel Butcher earned a Masters in Civil Engineering with a focus water resources from The University of South Florida and is a consulting engineer. [0:30] She was not aware of engineering when younger. Going off to college she was not equipped to make decision on the right career to choose. [3:15] How did Mel determine that she wanted to pursue a STEM degree? It took success in the professional world to give her the confidence that she could pursue a STEM degree. [5:10] Guidance for finding the right STEM profession. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/ https://seagrant.noaa.gov/ [11:00] Getting through college, don’t wait until the last minute – in high school start to get active in organizations. It is also ok to take a break before getting into college and investigate trade jobs. Forget about what other people think. [17:00] Parting advice – take a deep a breath and investigate how you can cultivate mindfulness. Nearly impossible to make a decision when you are 18, you can always course correct. – make a decision that works towards setting you up for success. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
18 minutes | Mar 24, 2019
81: Mechanical Engineer focused on Sports Biomechanics – Alison Sheets
Alison Sheets earned a PHD in Mechanical Engineering with a focus in sports biomechanics from UC Davis and is a researcher at Nike. [0:30] Always been passionate in sports and now combining that with a STEM career. [1:10] Goes into what a Biomechanics researcher does [2:15] Why mechanical engineering over bio medical engineering – she likes things she can see and goes into what opportunities are available in the work world. [5:15] How is important is the PHD for the research – her gymnastic coach actually had a PHD in physics. She started teaching at Ohio State University and then an opportunity opened up at Nike to do research and she moved into that position. [8:30]} What really has Alison fired out, are all the tools now available for monitoring the bodies motion. [10:15] Artificial Intelligence as it applies to biomechanics – pay attention in your linear algebra class. [13:20] Getting through college – classes got very hard in college – be patient with yourself and you will learn how you learn. [15:50] Lightening round – best advice and personal habits for success [17:15] parting guidance – don’t be afraid to try something new Five Days at Memorial by Sheri Fink. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
19 minutes | Mar 17, 2019
80: Science Geek to Management – Biology and MBA – John Heltemes
John Heltemes earned a Biology Degree and MBA fromThe University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and is a Senior Manager in Quality Control. [1:05] Why Biology: Biology is a wide field; ecology, botany and microbiology – really enjoyed science and wanted to be broad. [2:28] With degree from Whitewater – were there a lot of jobs? They did not call out Biology degrees, but there were a bunch for the science field. Most companies will train you for the actual roll. [4:15] Going into management – there was a need to help drive the lab environment and he really enjoyed it. Started by doing what needed to be done and determined he needed to educate himself more in leadership and management, hence the MBA. [6:10] At times you need to do things that just need to be done, and management will notice. [9:00] John’s specific area of expertise: general biology is where it started – very quickly it moved into food microbiology and now specifically bacterial culture. [11:00] What has John fired up today – in microbiology it is really evolving, and continues to be exciting. [12:20] Ah Ha into success – Has always had a great work ethic, but did not understand what drove him. You need to be self-reflective to see what your strengths are. [14:40] Getting through college – find a routine that works for you, but you are in control since you are on your own. Experience is key and you do not have to be perfect. [17:00] Best advice – when it comes to your career do what you are good at. The Happiness Advantage by Shawn Achor. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
21 minutes | Mar 10, 2019
79: Data Scientist at Facebook – Don’t be afraid to try something new – Brandon Rohrer
Brandon Rohrer earned a PHD in Mechanical Engineering fromMIT-Massachusetts Institute of Technology and is a data scientist at Facebook. Brandon Rohrer Blog Electrical Grid Blog Brandon Rohrer – Twitter Feed [0:00] Started out with a love of Robotics which got Brandon into Mechanical Engineering and migrated over to machine learning. Deciding how a machine was going to respond is where the machine learning comes into play. [3:05] Brandon goes into the types of skills needed to become a data scientist – and has never taken a formal class in data science beyond software engineering. Almost all of his knowledge in data science came after his formal degree. [4:20] How Brandon applies machine learning at Facebook – worked on a team to determine where electrical power existed in developing countries. They used satellite images to make guesses, and use an algorithm to connect all the dots to look for power lines. Now he is taking a lot data, like text, how to determine what the data really means – Text Classification. [7:00] What are ways to get up to speed on machine learning – you should just start playing around. [8:20] What a day might look like in the real world — he feels like he is building a big lego tower from all the bits of data and building something pretty spectacular. [10:37] What has Brandon really fired up today – has kept his love of robots – and seeing how AI and Machine learning is advancing is very excited. There is so much room for growth in this area and potentially a really good career. [13:45] Story of success – working as a teaching assistant and was only a year ahead of the students asking the questions – and felt very much out of his comfort zone. It is OK to explain and teach things even if you are not an expert. [16:20] Getting through college – don’t be afraid to try things, you need to be comfortable feeling dumb and doing things badly as you learn new skills. [18:06] Best advice – the ideal machine has no moving parts – simpler is better. Personal habit is to keep the end goal in mind don’t get sidetracked with the immediate task. Brandon uses twitter to gain insights. Brandon Rohrer – Twitter Feed [20:40] Parting guidance – don’t be afraid to try something out. Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
20 minutes | Mar 3, 2019
78: Computer Science – You need to focus on the human side to solve complex problems – Zoey Gagnon
Zoey Gagnon earned a Computer Science Degree from The Metropolitan State University of Denver and is an Engineering Manager at Meetup. [0:00] Zoey has focused on Agile development and builds large complex things with teams of people in humane ways and chose Computer Science in large part due to the degrees being offered. [1:50] Goes into a little bit about PHP and Micro Services and moving it into newer technologies. [5:45] Goes into what a day might look like – as a manager, Zoey is more of a coach. [8:40] What has Zoey fired up today is thinking about software architecture and goes into ways to make architecture decisions. — Need to have patience when making decision that will be hard to change in the future. [12:15] Getting through college – have an idea of the value that you want to get out of college. Go to college when you can really understand why you are going. [14:00] Software can be a very creative path, as the software is the path to solving problems and many ways to solve them. [15:40] Best advice is to have patience and to listen and to give others space to express themselves. And an attribute for success is to be an avid note taker. Zoey really likes the web page Lean X in Y Minutes for syntax translation from language to language. And a book Zoey recommends is “Working Effectively with Legacy Code” by Michael Feathers. [19:15] Parting advice – understand that the technology problems that we are trying to solve are very complex, too complex for a single person. So you need to focus on those human elements to work with people Free Audio Book from Audible. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost.
22 minutes | Feb 24, 2019
77: Chemical and Electrical Engineer with some great insights – Stephanie Chin
Stephanie Chin earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Chemical Engineering and a Master’s Degree in Electrical Engineering from The University of Southern California and is an engineer at Intel focusing on Yield Analysis. [0:55] How can you go from Chemical Engineering into Electrical Engineering? [2:35] Goes a bit into what NanoTechnology is – study of materials at a very small particles. [3:32] Discuss a bit about yield analysis – this requires knowledge of chemical processing and materials. Looks at the overall production using data. Works with people with Physics, electrical, material, and chemical engineering disciplines, it is a pretty diverse field. [8:20] what has Stephanie fired up, it’s chemistry. [9:06] Chemical Engineering or Chemistry, what would Stephanie recommend? – the million dollar question, are you more interested in being in the lab, then maybe Chemistry vs Chemical Engineering, bringing knowledge of chemistry to an application. There is more math in Chemical Engineering than in Chemistry. [11:20] Her first internship was an ah-ha moment that not all industries are the same, the general way of approaching a problem can be different. So you need to see if you will fit into that industry. [15:10] Advice for getting through college – Explore and try to do some research and industry experience. [16:50] Attributes to be successful after college – need to master time management, not just for work but yourself and your family. [18:25] Best advice-is to mentor others, you always have something to share. And a personal habit for success is self-reflection, but do not turn into self-doubt. And a book she recommends is “Educated” by Tera Westover. You can get a free book from Audible at www.stemonfirebook.com and can cancel within 30 days and keep the book of your choice with no cost. Free Audio Book from Audible.
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