Often, when pressing your foot on the gas pedal of a car and driving off, it's easy to let your thoughts turn to the journey. For Andrea Poosikian, she likes to think about the car, itself. How the brakes work, how the drivetrain works. It's a natural thought process for an engineering student--especially one who completed two completed two internships with General Motors in Michigan.
"I like the way electrical engineering helps you like contextualize the things that you see in everyday life," she said.
Poosikian has helped provide context, herself, as an ambassador for the college, giving tours to prospective students. The Marlboro, NJ native has also served for two terms as President of the Temple chapter of Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), been a member of Temple Society of Women Engineers (SWE) and worked as a Teaching Assistant in the Electric Circuits Lab.
For her next stop, Poosikian is still interested in learning how things work, but shifted to sustainable energy, working for multinational energy company BP.
"The technical title is Wind Engineering Challenger in the BP Wind Energy Group in Houston," she said. "Challenger is what graduate employees are called during their first three years at BP. I'll be doing performance engineering for BP's wind farms across the country. Essentially, each wind turbine has its own power curve. This group's job is to make sure that the turbines are performing the way that they are supposed to based off their power curves."
While performing research and development on a hybrid electric vehicle motor, Poosikian realized that most of the energy used to charge hybrid electric vehicles or electric vehicles comes from fossil fuels and nonrenewable sources. That is why she is especially excited to start as a Wind Engineer working with wind turbines, as it is a possibility to contribute to the proliferation of renewable energy sources into the grid.
It's also a good fit because she joked that she catches herself regularly picking glass bottles out of friends' trash bins for recycling.
"I've always been a big recycler," she laughed.
Though she's excited to put her conversational Spanish language skills to work in her new home city of Houston, she will miss Philadelphia and the experience at Temple. Including everything she was involved in as a student.
"I would tell future students: get involved in literally everything possible. At times, it was a double-edged sword, but being a teaching assistant, a research assistant, a college ambassador, honors ambassador, involved in IEEE," she said. "It all really helped me develop myself as a person and an engineer."