Making Sound Decisions

Jacob’s Story

Jacob Christensen, graduate of the University of Washington Certificate in Audio Production program reflects on this hands-on, three-course certificate program.

Every time I do something with the University of Washington, doors open.

Jacob Christensen

When Jacob Christensen started looking for ways to turn his passion for designing film and commercial scores, gaming sound effects, sweetening and all other things fill our ears into a profession, he found the UW Certificate in Audio Production and discovered a path to pursue his dream.

“I was looking for some way to get involved with audio engineering,” Jacob said, “and when I just typed in ‘UW audio engineering’ the certificate program popped up.”

For Jacob, taking the certificate seemed like a natural next step. “It was only a yearlong commitment and it was going to work with my schedule — so it made a lot of sense,” Jacob said. “Why not go down that road and get that awesome skillset?”

Beyond fitting his interests and his schedule, the program fit Jacob’s budget too. “In terms of affordability, the UW was definitely competitive,” he noted. “I could go to a two-year degree, pay a lot more money at a community college or something, and potentially not even necessarily learn as much as I learned though the UW certificate program.”

Learning from the Pros

So he applied, got accepted and found himself in the classroom learning from people who spend their days practicing what they teach. With this came the opportunity to see behind the scenes, to take an in-depth look at what his instructors were working on and learn from it. “It was great that the instructors from the program were actually doing audio engineering in their real life.”

Not only were his instructors industry professionals, though, they were pros in the field.

Jason recalls, “The first instructor has been a Grammy nominated artist for surround sound, the second instructor runs the audio at the Grammys and the third does more film-based stuff and has won multiple awards for his audio engineering in the field.”

I wouldn't be where I am without the University of Washington.

Jacob Christensen

It was great that the instructors from the program were actually doing audio engineering in their real life.

Jacob Christensen

Going Beyond the Classroom

Taking the certificate program gave Jacob a chance to learn from experts and to build lasting connections with people who share his passion. “There's been a lot of great networking,” he said, “just getting to meet people that I would not have had any access to if I was not in the certificate program.”

The icing on the cake? “Even as a result of being in the certificate program I have been invited to the Grammys,” Jacob shared.

According to Jacob, earning a Certificate in Audio Production from UW Professional & Continuing Education, a branch of UW Continuum College, has upped his credibility in the field. Since completing the program, he’s launched his own business and is now creating videos for a living, crediting the UW for getting him to this point in his career.

“I wouldn't be where I am without the University of Washington — and on multiple different levels,” he said. “I did my undergraduate here, I did the certificate program here and I'm now in a master's program here,” Jacob continued. “Every time I do something with UW, doors open.”