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Women @ Energy: Aria Soha

March 11, 2013 - 2:05pm


Aria Soha is an Engineering Physicist at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

Aria Soha is an Engineering Physicist at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory

Aria Soha is an Engineering Physicist at Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory. She is the leader of the Intensity Frontier and Test Beams Group in the Particle Physics Division, which manages the Fermilab Test Beam Facility, and coordinates the activities of the Minos Underground Areas. She also designed and maintains numerous websites, participates on several committees, and collaborates on the Muon g-2 experiment. Aria has worked at Fermilab since her graduation from college, originally working in the Accelerator Main Control Room as an operator of the Tevatron, Main Injector, and their associated accelerators and beamlines.  Aria holds a Bachelors of Science in Astrophysics from Carnegie Mellon University.

1) What inspired you to work in STEM?

I took my first physics class as a freshman in college (Carnegie Mellon), and found it very interesting.  I had one of those professors, that liked to encourage anyone and everyone to major in physics.  It worked on me.  

2) What excites you about your work at the Energy Department?

High Energy Physicists invented the world wide web. The Tevatron lead to the NMR.  I'm proud to be a part of that history.  In particular, since I work in Detector R&D, I'm sure that one day I'll be able to look back and say I helped the guy who ended up inventing....

3) How can our country engage more women, girls, and other underrepresented groups in STEM?

Exposure & Encouragement!  I had no idea what physics was until I was in college.  I had never heard of an engineer growing-up.  Children can only dream of becoming things they know about or see.  The unfair disadvantage is to children who don't know there are these great fields out there, and don't know that they could be a part of it.  

4) Do you have tips you'd recommend for someone looking to enter your field of work?

Do it because you enjoy it.  And if you enjoy it you won't be intimidated by failure, or let things keep you down.  

5) When you have free time, what are your hobbies?

Music, Woodworking, Race cars, and Fly-fishing.  Especially fly-fishing.