Tag Archives: technology

USINPAC congratulates Indian American students Ankita Ghoshal, Ajay Krishnan, Vaibhav Vavilala, Aashna Mago and Vinay Sriram who are among the 20 bright young people named as Davidson Fellows for 2013

Five Indian American students were among the 20 bright young people named as Davidson Fellows for 2013, a program that offers $50,000, $25,000 and $10,000 college scholarships to students 18 or younger who have created significant projects that have the potential to benefit society in the fields of science, technology, engineering, mathematics, literature, music and philosophy.

Receiving $25,000 scholarships are Ankita Ghoshal, 18, of Austin, Texas, for her project, “Sustainable 100w Portable Generators for 24/7/365 Power Demand”; and Aashna Mago, 17, of Newtown, Pa., for a project on “A Novel EZH2 Histone Methyltransferase Inhibitor: Potential Advancement in Epigenetic Cancer Therapy.”

Ghoshal attends Princeton University and studies chemical and biological engineering. She hopes to go to business school and eventually start her own technology company. She won the 2012 Outstanding Sustainability Award at I-SWEEEP and won first place in the 2012 ExxonMobile Texas Science and Engineering Fair.

Mago is a freshman at Stanford University and is considering a major in biology with a focus in molecular and cellular biology while also exploring more unfamiliar areas, like computer science and “Symbolic Systems,” an area of study at Stanford that encompasses artificial intelligence, cognitive science, and the human-computer interface.

Receiving $10,000 scholarships are Ajay Krishnan, 17, Portland, Ore., for “Optimizing the Microbial Fuel Cell-Microbial Electrolysis Cell Coupled System for Sustainable Hydrogen Gas”; and Vinay Sriram, 17, of Boyds, Md., for “Quantitative Modeling of Processing Cost and Energy Consumption for Cryptographically Enhanced Secure Internet Routing Protocol.”

Also receiving a $10,000 scholarship is Vaibhav Vavilala, 18, of Indianapolis, Ind., for “Neural Networks: Raising the Storage Capacity Production, Electricity Generation, and Improved Wastewater Treatment.”

Krishnan is a rising senior at the Oregon Episcopal School. His dream career would be to develop efficient and environmentally-friendly energy technologies to help make our planet more sustainable. He won the 2012 U.S. Stockholm Junior Water Prize Competition, was the gold medalist at the 2012 ISWEEEP competition, and was a regional finalist in the 2013 Google Science Fair.

Sriram is a rising senior in the accelerated science, mathematics, and computer science magnet program at Poolesville High School and plans to major in either computer science or electrical engineering in college. He was a finalist at the 2012 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair, where he won a third place grand award in the Computer Science category.

Vavilala is a freshman at Columbia University planning on studying computer science. He has been named a National Merit Finalist, a National AP Scholar, an Intel STS Semifinalist, a Siemens Regional Finalist, an Intel ISEF Finalist, a three-time AIME qualifier, a Congressional Award Gold Medalist and a United Way Outstanding Service Award recipient.

Source: IndiaWest

Be a Good Boy, Study Hard, and Start a Business

“My son got an A-minus in mathematics! He has brought shame on the family!”

Parody it may be, but sentiments such as this strike so close to the Indian bone that countless comedy programs have at some point featured a cartoonish parent scolding their child for delivering even a modicum less than perfection.  Indians in India, for all their other virtues and talents, have historically not been highly forgiving of failure.  While this attitude can be a fantastic foundation for a disciplined work ethic, it is not necessarily the optimal trait for building a robust technology startup ecosystem in India.  That requires a certain fearlessness and assiduousness in equal measure.  However, instilling the entrepreneurial ‘can-do’ attitude is one of America’s great virtues and gifts to the world.

Sadly, Administration rhetoric regarding India’s IT services industry has been unfriendly and contrarian to this spirit to say the least.  Yet it is not for nothing that most of America’s technology conglomerates— Intel, Microsoft, Google, Cisco, Motorola, and others—not only have a presence in India but conduct high-tech R&D there as well.  Given the size of India’s aggregate population and its pool of engineering talent, developing a startup biome as a next step would represent a major opportunity for both for Indian business and American venture capital and high-technology firms.

Successful and highly lucrative technologies such as cloud computing were developed by startups who often served as flexible technology incubators by larger more established companies.  These firms depended on networks of business accelerators and venture capital firms to support their technological development and business growth.  As we have witnessed in Silicon Valley, those initial investments of a few hundred thousand dollars often have come to be worth hundreds of millions and translated into high-paying jobs for college educated professionals.

Historically it has been difficult for Indian startups to get their ideas funded domestically, and even far more difficult to bootstrap companies through family and friends.  Capital flows from both financial and strategic American investors could well fill the void and be the impetus to encourage startups in India.  To be successful, this requires greater recognition by public policy makers of the mutual benefits of increasing trade and cross-border investment.  The Tata Group alone has over $3 billion in FDI in the United States and employs more than 19,000 workers in this country. That is as much a face of India’s IT services industry as BPO centers in Bangalore.

If the point was unclear, I’m sure someone is developing an app for this.