With COVID restriction slowly lifting in the United States, four Southwest Research Institute (SwRI) electrical engineers met with students in-person to panel a Q&A session for the University of Texas at San Antonio. These engineers from the Avionics and Support Systems Department of the Defense and Intelligence Solutions at SwRI included AESS Member Jenny Duong, Javier Gonzalez, Vincent Le, and Sarah Novitt. As the students chowed down on their pizza, relevant topics in avionics such as embedded systems and computer architecture were discussed by each panel member. These topics were then related to each of the individual engineers’ work at SwRI. This included work on software revisions and updates in legacy aircraft systems, radar systems using Integrated Air Defense Systems (IADS) for training purposes, and evaluating, repairing, and redesigning circuit cards. The presentation concluded with a Q&A session about what professional life is like, how to get internships, and technical questions related to research and work. Through this panel event panel, they made an impact on 22 students who one day will hopefully follow in their footsteps and advance the field of avionics as they are. These events are a simple way to engage the community and involve junior IEEE members in AESS activities.
Figure 1- Southwest Research Institute engineers discuss life after college with students from The University of Texas at San Antonio. Pictured from left to right- Vincent Le, Javier Gonzalez, Sarah Novitt, and Jenny Duong.