Changing the Conversation

Many Lives of Engineers
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“Flying has played a huge role in my engineering life, with both my hobby and my profession teaching me lessons about the other. Flying continuously tests and develops problem-solving skills that help me in my day-to-day work. Being able to evaluate situations quickly, identify the best solution, make a plan and execute it is a critical aviation skill that helps everything else in my life. Having an engineering background helps me understand and troubleshoot problems on the ground and in the air with airplanes.”

— Dan Singleton, M.S. EE ’08, Ph.D. EE ’10; president, Transient Plasma Systems Inc.

“I love performing because it is thrilling to feel an entire audience follow you on a journey. Hearing people laugh after you deliver a funny line, seeing them get teary with sympathy and understanding for your character, or watching people beam with delight after a joyous dance number — connecting with people in all these ways brings me such pride as a performer.”

— Catherine Ricafort, B.S. ISE ’09; currently starring on Broadway in “Holiday Inn”

“As a tennis player, it’s my passion and job to ‘engineer’ a match just as carefully as anything in the real world. I plan, prepare and lay out my methods and tools, implementing them in a competitive setting while remaining agile in my management of them, adjusting my strategy if need be. Physical and mental resource management sets me up for success in a long, three-set match.”

— Inés Guinard, senior, USC Viterbi industrial and systems engineering