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10 DESIGN007 MAGAZINE I AUGUST 2019 Feature Interview by the I-Connect007 Editorial Team Bill Brooks of Nordson ASYMTEK is a long- time PCB designer and one of the first people to teach PCB design courses in a college set- ting. He recently spoke with the I-Connect007 editorial team about his history in design and his time as a PCB design instructor, the cur- riculum he developed and taught, and various techniques that might be enacted today to bet- ter educate the designers of tomorrow. Andy Shaughnessy: Bill, can you start by giving us a little background about yourself and how you got into PCB design? Bill Brooks: My dad was a technician in the aerospace industry. He started a PCB shop out of his garage when I was in high school. I spent some time learning the process with him and ended up working in his shop for about five years. I ended up getting my first PCB de- sign job with Sub Sea Systems in Escondido. Then, I did job shopping for various compa- nies around the San Diego Area for many years. Barry Matties: And how did you learn printed circuit design? Brooks: My father taught me from the begin- ning. He bought the materials and a design book from Bishop Graphics. I learned the whole manufacturing process before doing de- sign, such as drilling, plating, etching, routing, and putting in eyelets in boards. He got me started, and I learned a lot more as I worked for other companies throughout my career and attended seminars and workshops at design- related events. Matties: What year was that? Brooks: It was around 1970. Matties: Fast forward to when you started your design classes. What inspired you to do that? Brooks: When I competed in PCB Top Gun at PCB West in 2000, Rick Hartley interviewed us during the competition. After I told him my story, he asked, "Have you ever thought of mentoring?" I had not, but that seed he plant- Bill Brooks on Teaching PCB Design at Palomar College

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