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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Radar will be discussion topic for STEM talk

A synthetic aperture radar image shows the Teide volcano on Tenerife, part of the Canary Islands located off the coast of Morocco. The synthetic aperture radar will be discussed in a seminar Feb. 10 on NE Campus. NASA

By Kathryn Kelman/ne news editor

The NE Campus Math Club Infinity sponsors seminars with a variety of speakers to showcase the broad scope of jobs for STEM majors.

STEM is an acronym referring to the academic disciplines of science, technology, engineering and mathematics.

This month, math adjunct instructor John Lusk will talk on synthetic aperture radar, a technology he has worked with through his other job at Lockheed Martin, 12:20-2 p.m. Feb. 10 in NTAB 2223.

“When we get a speaker to agree to come talk, we just say, ‘Ya know, whatever you wanna do! We’re trying to do careers in STEM,’” said math instructor and club advisor Kimberly Campbell.

Synthetic aperture radar can generate high-resolution imagery even at night or during bad weather. The system has a wide range of military and science applications.

“They can use this sensor to measure elevation changes after volcanic eruptions or earthquakes,” Lusk said. “So it’s kind of used for disaster relief, and then it has military applications too.”

Lusk believes the radar falls into the technology, engineering and mathematics disciplines. Because of his work with the algorithms for the imaging system, he will focus primarily on the mathematics.

“My plan is to show some of the math, but mainly show examples, like pictorial examples of what it is,” Lusk said. “I’m trying to keep it from being intimidating.”

NE student Joan Garcia, club vice president of Math Club Infinity, plans to attend.

“I think it will be very interesting,” he said. “As an aspiring engineer, I like to explore various fields and learn about innovative technology.”

Garcia believes the seminars showcasing different careers in STEM are extremely important because some students don’t have an exact career path to follow.

“The seminars are helpful in that they can be inspiring,” he said.

When Garcia began taking classes at TCC, he was unsure of his future. He just intended to get his basics out of the way.

Garcia said the deciding point for his academic career was a biology class for non-science majors.

“I took a biology class for non-science majors and was inspired by my biology professor Dr. [Kristin] Byrd,” he said. “A little nudge was the catalyst I needed to jumpstart my academic career.”

Byrd helped him discover a passion for science that led him to take classes like Calculus II, University Physics, and Biology for Science Majors.

“I believe that the seminars can provide that nudge that a person needs in order to find the perfect career path,” Garcia said.

NE and SE student Maniv Lamichhane agrees the seminars are beneficial.

“Most of us who chose to pursue a STEM career have a general idea of what kind of job we would like but don’t know exactly what those jobs are,” he said. “I feel these seminars give you an option of entirely different career options which might just help you find your passion or a niche.”

Campbell hopes the seminar will open students’ minds and encourage them to pursue different research and paths of inquiry.

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