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Maya Vazquez


Columbia College Chicago, B.S. Acoustics

Planting the Seed

I have been cultivating my interest in acoustics long before I knew that this career was for me. It began early, with an office internship in high school where I was assigned a project to improve the sound quality of their phone rooms. I modeled the rooms, researched absorptive panels and door sweeps, and even did the installation myself. That experience planted a seed that I nurtured through my studies at Columbia College Chicago. An opportunity arose to broaden my horizons in acoustics when a client wished to renovate a cultural center and incorporate an orchestral performance space. Changes to the building needed approval from the San Francisco City Council. During that process, I created a diagram to illustrate the acoustical benefits of our proposed renovations and potential issues that would arise without them. My visual aid was able to effectively communicate acoustical concepts to the council members and sway their vote in favor of our recommendations. This project validated my understanding that acoustics is innately woven into the arts. I find myself in a career that gives me the opportunity to contribute to the arts as well as elevating the experience of people’s everyday lives. Whether that means developing the acoustics for a concert hall, working on a residential building, or renovating a restaurant, all my work inspires me to develop my skills and seek new challenges.

Art in Many Mediums

My dad encouraged me the most to pursue this career after recognizing my math and science abilities, similar to the way my parents supported me to explore art at a young age. I have always enjoyed expressing myself creatively and have dabbled in many artistic endeavors over the course of my life. Whether it be music, painting or competitive salsa dancing, art is my preferred pastime. I believe my best work happens when creating pieces as gifts for the people I love. I am grateful to be able to make and appreciate art in my free time as well as aid artists through my work at Salter.