State of the Chapter
Hello everyone, I think it’s safe to say that the last 5 months have been a heck of year. I want to start off by saying I hope all of you are safe, healthy, and sane. Working in a pandemic isn’t easy and when pairing logistical complications with a mentally and emotionally challenging atmosphere, it can be difficult. If you are having a rough time, don’t be afraid to reach out for help. You can check out the UT mental health and counseling services at https://cmhc.utexas.edu/ or my phone and email are always open, too.
Due to COVID, it is somewhat unlikely that we will have too many in-person meetings this coming semester. We will do our best to adapt to the ever changing atmosphere with virtual meetings, but perhaps we can manage some socially distant get-togethers. Pizza and snacks will be tough to offer through Zoom and is just one major challenge we’re facing. Maybe we invest in UT ASA face masks? Maybe? Maybe.
Next, I wanted to state, unequivocally, that racism and discrimination will not be tolerated in our Chapter. Full stop. Acoustics is for everyone. If you witness any action, conversation, or environment related to our chapter that you feel has shown prejudice in any way, contact your officers immediately. We represent the ASA here at UT and we therefore represent their ideals. For their official statement, please check out https://acousticalsociety.org/asa-statement-on-racism-and-injustice/.
On to improvements. We have now established a new website for our chapter. https://atscasa.org/. It is directly affiliated with the ASA, and is arguably much fancier than the one provided to us from UT. It is currently under construction, but if you have ideas on what you would like to see from our website feel free to contact me. Main goals will be to provide a central location for all the Mailchimp announcements, job postings, and to provide a way for groups to get in contact with us for demos/ seminars etc. We’re kind of a big deal, so having a proper website that shows how big of a deal we are is important.
Lastly, elections. I was holding out hope that we could have an in-person meeting before the term started to have pizza, watch a movie, and vote on new officers. Unfortunately, that won’t happen because we aren’t important enough, unlike our football team. It’s safer to avoid close contact indoors and with the outdoors being approximately the surface of the sun, it doesn’t make for ideal meeting conditions. Positions that are open: Chair, Vice-chair, Secretary. Matt Zeh will still be treasurer as that is a two-year gig.
Current nominations are as follows:
Chair: Alicia Casacchia
Vice-Chair: Sam Parker
Secretary: Tyler McGee
You have until Thursday, August 20th at 5 PM to nominate yourself or someone else. We will be conducting e-mail-in voting of sorts if other nominations come in. I know there have been some dubious claims about rigged elections with similar systems, but you have my word that these elections will be entirely fair. I will not accept bribes or political power to sully the sanctity of our democratic process and you can quid pro quote me on that.
The fall semester is quickly approaching and I look forward to (virtually?) seeing all of you. A reminder that we have two new incoming students and I would like everyone to be mindful that Zoom meetings do not extend the same personal welcome that face to face introductions or happy hours give to new people. Moving to a new place can be difficult, especially during a pandemic.
Sending everyone good vibrations,