CAM Faculty Member Jiayue Cecilia Wu Becomes First Asian American Woman Elected to Audio Engineering Society’s Board of Governors
Assistant Prof. Wu has also held the position of AES's DEI committee chair since 2020 and is using data science to collect information on the audio industry's demographics.Megan Briggs | College of Arts & Media Nov 1, 2023
Assistant Professor Jiayue Cecilia Wu, PhD was named to the Audio Engineers Society’s (AES) board of governors. Wu was elected to one of six governors positions and represents the first Asian-American woman to be elected to the board.
AES is a global organization that is widely known and respected by those with touchpoints to the audio world. Each year, AES hosts a convention where audio engineers and recording artists gather to learn from subject matter experts and to network. At this year’s 155th fall convention from Oct 24-27 in New York City, Wu presented a research paper and participated as a panel speaker in two panels titled “Diversity, Equity & Inclusion within STEM Societies” and “DEI in Audio Education.” She represented the College of Arts & Media's (CAM) Music & Entertainment Industry Studies (MEIS) department and their undergraduate and graduate Recording Arts programs at AES's educational and career fair for student recruitment. Additionally, Wu hosts the conference’s DEI Committee Town Halls and DEI Mixer events, having held the position of AES's DEI committee chair since 2020.
At CU Denver, Wu serves in CAM as director of the Master of Science in Recording Arts (MSRA) program. As a faculty member in the MEIS department, Wu has orchestrated and managed innovative initiatives that highlight DEI in audio engineering. For instance, she serves as a faculty advisor for several student organizations such as the Electronic Music Club and AES CU Denver Student Chapter. She is also engaged with the Supporting Women in Audio Group (SWAG) student group, which was founded by MEIS students and whose goal is to “balance the mix” by supporting women interested in recording arts, thereby increasing the number of women working in the audio industry.
Current estimates state that the percentage of professionals in the audio industry that identify as female is as low as 5% and no better than 14% (see the 2016 AES conference paper “Women in Audio: contributions and challenges in music technology and production” by Marlene Mathew, Jennifer Grossman, and Areti Andreopoulou). These figures are something Wu thinks about often. At this year’s AES convention, Wu presented her first-authored research, “Advancing DEI in AES: A Pilot Analysis of AES Convention Participants Data”, which addresses this problem from a data science perspective. She co-authored this research with Richa Namballa, Mary Mazurek, and Teri Grossheim. The pilot study produced the first DEI dataset for the AES community and establishes a baseline of the current demographic makeup of the AES community, which will allow researchers to track how the demographics change over time.
Wu says her presence on AES’s board of governors and as DEI committee chair “signifies a monumental step toward a more inclusive audio industry” and hopes it serves as inspiration for students—particularly women and women of color.