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“Don’t stress about what you don’t know.. it’s okay to not know something and it’s liberating to express that and explore it.”
I’m Andy and I’m currently working as a design engineer in mask product development at ResMed. Before Resmed, I worked as a research engineer for a university where I worked on a gesture controlled prosthetic hand and a shoe insole that measured gait parameters. For a while there, I worked in a start-up developing a locomotive device for virtual reality. Before all that, I was working as a music therapist.
Maybe this is weird, but I honestly don’t think I had any idea what I wanted to be as a child. I remember I wanted to be an inventor because it sounded really cool and fun, but over my teenage years my thoughts of what I wanted to be were always changing. I had no idea what I wanted to be until years out of school and truthfully I still don’t know what I want to be when I grow up!
Not at all! I chose an engineering degree because I was good at maths, physics, and engineering studies in high school and I liked solving technical problems, but my passions at the time were far from STEM. While I was doing my engineering degree, I was working as disability support worker and passionately into playing music, both of which I enjoyed so much that I decided to start a business in music therapy. For a long time, I was debating whether to leave the stem path behind as a career and focus on music therapy as I was getting a lot of enjoyment and satisfaction out of my career and very little satisfaction out of my degree. Over time though, I found I wanted to spend all of my spare time tinkering with electronics and making things – Stem projects ended up becoming my passion.
Eventually, the path of being challenged in a technical way appealed more to me as a career than music therapy, and those two things flipped – STEM became my career, and music/disability support became my passion. I’m glad things worked out the way that they did – had I not explored a different career path, I don’t think I would have been able to appreciate my degree as much as I did and I wouldn’t have had the foresight to understand the benefits of a career in STEM.
Learning from the extremely talented people I work with and being in an environment of constantly solving technical problems. I also love the feeling of being able to hold something in my hand that is the result of thousands of hours of hard work and carefully considered design. I also get a lot of satisfaction from knowing that the final product we create will have a positive impact on people’s lives. Free coffee is great too.
That’s such a hard question to answer because STEM is such broad field! I think that STEM has the potential to solve some of the world’s biggest problems such as reversing climate change, improving renewable energy technology, disease elimination/prevention, improving quality of life for those less fortunate, and increasing humanity’s collective understanding of the world around us.
Surfing, tennis, tinkering with electronics and playing music. More broadly, I really enjoy spending time with my family and people that I care about.
Don’t stress about what you don’t know.. it’s okay to not know something and it’s liberating to express that and explore it. Oh, and don’t forget to floss.