Senior, Mechanical Engineering
Athens, OH 31 August 2014 –
The end of this summer was bittersweet. While I am always happy to come back to Athens, this summer I had the awesome opportunity of being invited back for my third co-op with Honda R&D Americas Inc. I worked in the Steering and Handling test group (this summer and last summer) and my group was responsible for the way the vehicle responds when the steering wheel is turned both when the car is stationary and when it is moving at any speed.
I helped the engineers tune steering systems to fit the needs of the anticipated demographics for several types of Hondas. I was able to watch the new Acura TLX go from the early prototype stages to a full-blown automobile, and it was a fantastic learning experience. I was exposed to some of the other new models Honda is currently working on and I am very excited to see them as finished vehicles.
Probably some of the best experiences I had working with Honda were some of the higher speed testing trials that I was able to sit in on. Watching a highly trained engineer push a prototype vehicle up to the very highest limit of the car is a great experience, but sitting in the car while it is sliding sideways is another experience entirely. I learned how to control motion sickness very quickly, as collecting data using computers while someone drives is actually much more difficult than it sounds. I was able to work with some extremely talented and smart people and I will not soon forget the experiences I had there.
Senior, Electrical Engineering
Athens, OH 06 March 2014 – To escape the stress of our engineering coursework, many students in the Russ College (including myself) have hobbies and other activities that we partake in outside of the classroom. For me, I am practicing musician and recording artist. For the past nine years, I have been actively involved in a Columbus-based rock band called Playing To Vapors. Consisting of my best high school friends, we fall into the alternative/progressive rock genre akin to the likes of Radiohead, Minus the Bear, and My Morning Jacket. From live performances to studio recording, we immerse ourselves in every part of the music making experience—-writing, recording and performing all original material.
As a student of both electrical engineering and audio production I am frequently asked how audio/music and electrical engineering are related. It may seem that the two are polar opposites; however, recording a professional sounding record requires a deep technical knowledge of acoustics, recording equipment and analog and digital signal processing.
A true recording engineer not only understands the qualities that make a great song but must fully understand signal-processing equipment such as equalizers and compressors to properly manage frequency balance and transient content in a recording. Many of concepts which are developed through electrical engineering courses are also important in the audio world, including gain, frequency response, sampling, bit depth, feedback, filtering, signal-to-noise ratio, and many, many more. What electrical engineering has brought to my audio background is a greater knowledge of these concepts and the ability to apply my technical know-how directly to my work as a recording artist and musician.