Here is a picture of me with students in Dharmasthala, India, where I led hands on demonstrations of scientific principles and introduced the students to concepts like superhydrophobicity.
In the rural village of Dharmasthala, I saw how farmers and entrepreneurs used solar cells and hydroelectric plants to power their communities. One of those communities installed solar power on the local school buildings. As students went to school, they recharged battery packs and brought them back home to power their lights at night, thus encouraging students to go to school in the process of powering their communities. The picture above is me playing a local combination of tag and duck, duck, goose with the students at one of these schools. Seeing the impact of renewable energy on the people’s lives in rural India solidified my belief that my generation’s greatest and most crucial humanitarian challenge is to find economical, eco-friendly, and accessible ways to create, store, and use energy. It is one of my goals to develop the scientific knowledge central to meeting this energy challenge, for I know that such knowledge will improve the lives of millions of people in the United States and around the world.
University of Colorado Undergraduate Advising Workshop:
My colleagues, Professor Van Zeghbroeck, and I led a workshop at University of Colorado – Boulder to provide guidance to Research Experiences for Undergraduate students as they apply for and choose graduate schools.
“Technology Fight Club”:
To engage with innovative individuals in the Champaign-Urbana community, I created what is known as “technology fight club” (TFC). TFC is a group of local entrepreneurs and graduate students who discuss topics from innovation, to science and great books. In the first year, TFC grew from 4 to 26 members. The collaborations in TFC inspired many innovative concepts, two of which became companies, Petronics Inc. and Perform Electronics Inc., which have resulted in almost $200,000 in outside funding.