Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Weekly Blog #12- Interview 6 and Thanksgiving Break!

I had my 6th Research Interview on Monday with Mr. Dalmacio, an electrical engineer who works for Oracle and specializes in telecommunications. Although I am looking more into ICs and the medical side, I still gained valuable information from this meeting. One piece of advice that he emphasized the most was getting an education in business, whether it's a minor or an MBA. Mr. Dalmacio's main regret was not pursuing an MBA when working at Nortel. He was discouraged by the amount of work required and the immediate needs of raising two children, but now realizes that a couple of job opportunities were missed because of this lack of experience in the business field. I had planned on minoring in business while pursuing a degree in EE, but now I'm starting to rethink what my dad had advised. He encouraged me to do the opposite- to major in business and minor in engineering, because like Mr. Dalmacio said, pursuing a startup requires a lot of exposure to the business world. I wouldn't immediately change my major to business, as I chose engineering because of my genuine interest in it, but I will definitely try to gain a solid education in business.

An interesting yet helpful research interview was a pretty good start to my break! I'm still suffering from allergies and a runny nose, but I am looking forward to Thanksgiving Day. I still have quite a few writing supplements to complete over this week, but I will push forward and look for places of inspiration.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

Weekly Blog #11- Pushing Forward

Now that speeches are over and I've already had 5 interviews, I must remember to keep pushing forward. To find a mentor who is the best match for me, I need to continue searching for professionals to interview. I will also be keeping Original Work in the back of my head to be fully prepared when the deadline comes closer. A lot of extracurricular activities have been squeezing my schedule (namely orchestra rehearsals), but ironically, this has almost pushed me to be more efficient. When I come home at 7:30 PM, I'm fully aware that there's no time for distractions, and I need to quickly finish my homework to accomplish other tasks. On occasion, when I don't have club meetings or rehearsals, I tend to relax and forget to keep track of time.

Although I'd definitely prefer not being pressed, I will say that I asked for a busy and demanding schedule, so I must take responsibility for it and do the best I can. One thing we discussed in ISM was balancing a proper lifestyle and truly focusing on what we love to do. Though we might be obligated to fulfill certain duties, in the future, whether it's college or work, we need to think through our early decisions before there is no longer a choice. I made this sound a little pessimistic, but I honestly took a positive note from this discussion. Right now, I enjoy immersing myself in different clubs and experiencing a variety of cultures and ideas, but I plan to use this exposure to help me focus on my true passions in college. I also will begin a more balanced lifestyle (such as exercising more often) to build a stronger stamina and active mindset. I will continue to search for professionals and push forward for before the break!

Research Speech #1

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Weekly Blog #10- Speeches

This week in ISM, we gave our 10-12 minute Research Speeches about our research, interviews, and insight gained thus far. I'm usually not that nervous about public speaking (especially when we have a PowerPoint in the back), but that Wednesday definitely reminded me what it was like to have 20 pairs of eyes concentrated on every word I'm saying! After watching a video of my speech, I'm surprised that my voice managed to conceal my nerves and adrenaline, but I didn't need to worry so much during the speech. I did better than I expected, although in the future, I will be sure to plan out my speech a little more thoroughly. Even though I could tell some speeches were rehearsed and memorized, they were much more engaging and prepared, with less filler words. Overall, I gave a decent speech, but I will do my best to create a more prepared and professional speech for the next one around.

Lastly, I can't believe it's already November. This school year is flying by, and winter break is approaching, which means 2 things: college applications, and finding a mentor. I plan on contacting Dr. Gui to get some contacts from TI, but other than that, I can't definitively say who I would like to ask to be my mentor. This process will require a lot of consideration, and I am still keeping my doors open. I am excited and nervous for what's to come!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Weekly Blog #9- Interviews and Ideas

This past week, I went on my last two (required) interviews! I had an information-packed interview with Dr. Gui at SMU, where we talked for the most part about her past and current research. I learned so much about integrated circuits and some of their various applications. I realized that ICs are more related to electromagnetism and board design, and I have started to shift my focus more towards ICs. I had an interview the next day with Mr. Arellano, who focuses on radio frequencies and engineering management. That interview was by far the longest I've ever had- 1 hour and 45 minutes! In fact, my lower back started to burn a little because of sitting so straight for so long. I gained a lot of knowledge about the different fields within EE (such as ICs, RFs, and signal processing), but also gained new insight into succeeding and growing in industry. Since I had experience from the previous 3 interviews, I was definitely able to make the most out of my time with these last 2 interviews. By "last," I mean the most recent- I'm still looking to interview professionals in industry, especially Texas Instruments, as Dr. Gui mentioned that they have begun to look into medical applications.

As for Original Work, I've decided to explore a basic tool of electrical engineering- an oscilloscope. This instrument is used more frequently for signal processing, but it is still a fundamental instrument that must be comprehended well. I will conduct an AP Physics-style lab to better understand how and why this instrument is used. My proposal is in the making and will solidify by ideas by next week.