Area native enters brand new field

Published 12:00 am Thursday, December 30, 2004

In our world swirling with a dizzying array of technological advances, few truly understand the workings of the magical devices they use everyday.

That’s where Morgan Academy graduate Anthony Friday comes in.

If the world of wireless technology still strikes the general public as more magic than science, you can call Friday a modern-day Merlin.

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Friday is one of seven Auburn graduates on the cutting edge of a new engineering program that is unique in the United States, wireless engineering.

Friday, a 23-year-old area native, can now rattle off “incantations” about electromagnetic fields, wireless transmission signals and other mysterious subjects.

Anthony said Auburn is the first school in the country to offer an undergraduate degree in the field.

“It’s a spinoff from electrical engineering,” the former Morgan Academy student said.

Friday’s always been interested in electromagnetic fields, radio waves and the ethereal stuff that makes modern life work, but it wasn’t until his sophomore year that he was able to do something about it.

Friday may be the Harry Potter of wireless communications now, it wasn’t always his chosen field of study.

“It (the degree) didn’t exist my freshman year,” he said.

He started studying electrical engineering, until the program was created in 2000.

“When the wireless program came to be I jumped right in it,” he said. “I

believe (there is) over 100 now, actually enrolled in the program,” he said.

Luckily, the work Friday put into an electrical engineering degree wasn’t wasted. Friday said the curriculum for electrical and wireless engineer is the same until the last year of study.

Then Friday found himself studying antennae design, electromagnetic fields and signal processing.

Now that he’s graduated, he’s ready to go right back in and learn more.

Friday will be working on a Master’s degree, in a related field, like wireless securities or communications systems.

He hopes to go into military research and design after that.

Friday’s love of military matters began early in his life.

“My dad got me interested when I was younger,” he said.

Despite his desire to help soldiers communicate better, Friday won’t hold out for a job in the military felid.

“Whoever offers me something,” he said, “I’ll give it a chance.”