Alumni Spotlight Q & A:
Where are you from, Evin?
I am from Norwich, Connecticut.
What was your major at UNH and who was your adviser?
I was a Physics major and graduated in 2018. I basically took all but one of the undergraduate physics classes offered. My adviser was Dr. Nathan Schwadron. My research was working on NASA's Parker Solar Probe writing data processing code.
Why did you choose UNH?
I chose UNH because of the availability for undergraduate research positions and because it was the most affordable school I was accepted to.
What were your favorite courses and which professors had the greatest impact on you?
I took 20 credits of Mathematics with Adam Boucher and he was able to teach me an exceptional amount. I greatly enjoyed many of my Physics classes, especially General Relativity, taught by Dave Mattingly.
What was student life like and were you involved in any extracurricular activities?
Looking back, student life is very different from the day to day of fulltime work, but it's also very fun. I enjoyed that I could hold a job doing work related to physics. I also enjoyed the Math Club and the Society of Physics Students.
What was the biggest transitional issue you faced when you started at UNH?
To be honest, the most difficult aspect was the cultural difference between my hometown and high school and UNH. I always enjoyed school greatly, so if anything, I was more motivated as a student when I started at UNH compared to high school.
How is UNH addressing the social cause you are most passionate about?
There are two main social issues that come to mind: racial injustice and climate change. I feel the EOS research helps with understanding and advocating for addressing climate change. I saw this when I was at the AGU Conference in 2017. As for racial injustice, there have been many issues of oppression that I haven't seen be thoroughly addressed by UNH as a whole.
What is your current position and why is your work important?
I am currently a Senior Software Engineer at Cambridge Mobile Telematics. I do a mix of software development and DevOps development. I enjoy the variety in my work and the fact that it is affecting change at the company. The mission of the company is to reduce road fatalities by teaching people to become safer drivers.
What are your future career plans?
I would like to continue in Software. I'm at the point where I need to decide if I want to pursue management or not and I don't know where I will land with respect to that. I hope to improve work culture and promote equality in tech.
How did UNH contribute to your career and where you are now?
UNH not only taught me physics and problem solving, but I learned so much of what I know about software from Jon Niehof. I was not a grad student, but one of my favorite memories was going to Boston's Museum of Science with the Society of Physics students. It was a great reward to apply for the funding, plan, and coordinate the trip for everyone and see that come to fruition. Getting to make a fun day for not only myself, but for the group, was really rewarding.
Remember that the quality of work is almost always more important than the quantity of work. It is important to know when to work extra hard, but rest is important. Making sure to take the time to let your subconscious work and your brain rest is essential to quality work.
Any advice for undergrads/grad students who are conducting research?
Remember that the quality of work is almost always more important than the quantity of work. It is important to know when to work extra hard, but rest is important. Making sure to take the time to let your subconscious work and your brain rest is essential to quality work. Don't become trapped in a spiral of constantly overworking yourself.
What makes you proud to be affiliated with UNH?
I love that I can tell people that any physics student can find research at UNH. I also appreciate that I got a good education from professors who didn't depend on overworking students to get results.
What impact do you hope your work has on future generations?
I certainly hope to make the world a better place. If I change careers, I see myself moving into the climate space to make sure there is a sustainable future for future generations.
Is there anything else you’d like to add that we haven’t covered?
I'd reiterate that the research I did and what I learned about software during undergrad was essential to my current career. I am also extremely grateful for the fact that I was able to get work experience while paying the bills in undergrad.
Are you on social media and do you have any other links to share?
- Yes, you can find me on LinkedIn.
- This publication is from when I spent a summer at CU Boulder during my NSF REU entitled, Interpreting Dust Impact Signals Detected by the STEREO Spacecraft.
Are you or is someone you know an alum who conducted research with us? Do YOU want to be featured in an upcoming Alumni Spotlight? We'd love to connect! Please email Rebecca.Irelan@unh.edu with details.