The Team

Ship Location

Channel Islands, USA

Drew Stevens

Photo of Drew Stevens
Graduate Research Assistant
Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping / Joint Hydrographic Center at the University of New Hampshire

Tell us about your work / research. What kinds of things do you do?

What sparked your initial interest in your career?

I discovered the field of data visualization while working at an environmental consulting company in Oakland, CA. One of my mentors lent me the book Beautiful Evidence by one of the pioneers of modern data visualization, Edward Tufte, and it opened my eyes to the world of visualization as an academic area of study and research. I started reading as much as I could find about data visualization, which eventually lead me to apply to the Data Visualization Research Lab at CCOM.

Who influenced you or encouraged you the most?

My fifth-grade teacher, Rick Kleine, was an incredibly passionate educator who had a gift for helping students see and realize their potential. He used many non-traditional teaching methods to challenge us individually and as a class to foster our academic learning, social skills, and sense of ethical responsibility. Many of the lessons I learned in his class have stuck with me throughout my life; the skills he helped me to develop as his pupil have played a significant role in allowing me to achieve my goals.

What element of your work / study do you think is the most fascinating?

What other jobs led you to your current career?

Bachelor of Arts in Music Composition -- University of California, Davis 2007; Masters of Science in Computer Science -- University of New Hampshire 2017

What are your hobbies?

What advice would you give to someone who wants to have a career like yours?

As someone who has followed a very non-traditional path to get to where I am, my biggest piece of advice is to be relentless in pursuing your interests. Do not become discouraged when you can’t see a clear path to your goal; sometimes by pushing forward in any direction, you can end up in a place that gives you an even better perspective of your objective. The important part is that you just keep moving forward.