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Emily Au, BEng '15

(Electrical & Biomedical Engineering)

Helping patients through technology

Remember Emily Au?

You know, president of the McMaster Engineering Society in 2013/14? Varsity curler? In the band for the Mac Eng Musical?

Or maybe you ran into her volunteering for Welcome Week, at the rock-climbing club, working for Venture or taking part in the McMaster Engineering Competition? Possibly through the Biomedical and Electrical Engineering Societies?

“I also had a co-op term each summer,” says Au. “It was all about new experiences to learn from, new people to meet and new challenges to face.”

Somehow, she also found enough time to earn her electrical and biomedical engineering degree and now holds a senior R&D position with Baylis Medical.

With the company for about five years, Au works on the research and development of new medical products for use globally.

“On a day-to-day, I'm involved with things such as designing, prototyping, testing, and risk analysis throughout the product life cycle,” she says.

It’s the job she knew she wanted way back in Grade 11, when she sat in on a lecture about work being done in a prosthetics lab.

“I remember being fascinated by the technology and the idea about using engineering to help people really hit home with me,” says Au.

Although more than a decade has passed since that day, she remains committed to the vision of helping patients through technology. “I feel a great sense of accomplishment when I see the positive impacts of the products I work on.”

Unsurprisingly, she urges students to seek out a variety of experiences as a way to discover interests and practice skills.

“I had a manager once talk to me about finding my place in a company,” she says. “Picture a Venn Diagram with three circles: What skills do I enjoy? What skills am I good at? What skills are valued at my company?”

“Your ideal role is at the intersection of those three things.”