Official Student Newspaper of Henry M. Gunn High School

Senior Michael Walker: Audio Engineer

At every event, there is always someone in sound booth cuing the music. At the Los Altos United Methodist Church, that person is senior Michael Walker. “I’m not really the guy in the studio,” Walker said. “I’m more the guy at a concert that works in the mixed booth.”

As an audio engineer, Walker’s job is to create a mix of harmonious sounds with clips of instruments, voices and effects for the church and local events. “I do a lot of things at the church, and one of the services is a more music-focused worship band,” he said.

An aspect of audio engineering that Walker finds challenging is deciding when something is a finished product. “[As a mechanic], your job is very concrete,” he said. “You can say, ‘Hey, this engine runs. I did my job.’ In audio, however, there’s no concrete satisfaction standard.”

Walker has always been interested in technology. “When I was in sixth or seventh grade, I started volunteering and doing the cameras for live streams,” he said. “In freshman year, I started doing paid work as an audio engineer.”
In addition, Walker believes that his experience has helped him with college applications. “Both of [my recommenders] were mentors of mine,” he said.

Walker advises students to not spread themselves too thin with after-school jobs. “I think the best approach to prepare yourself is to find something that you are good at and enjoy and then go incredibly in-depth and commit yourself to it.”

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