CORVALLIS - A young doctoral student studying electrical engineering at Oregon State University, who did not see or touch a computer until he was 18 years old and now plans to help people with diabetes wirelessly control their insulin levels, has been named recipient of a highly-competitive Intel Fellowship valued at more than $42,000.
Pavan Kumar Hanumolu, 27, received one of the 35 fellowships awarded nationally each year by Intel to students they deem "The Best of the Best" from select U.S. universities. The fellowship provides a year's tuition, a living stipend, a new Intel® Centrino™ brand notebook, plus access to an Intel mentor.
"Recipients of this award are typically from the top-10 universities such as Stanford, MIT, and Berkeley," said Hanumolu's advisor at OSU, professor of electrical engineering Un-Ku Moon. "This fact highlights Pavan's exceptional potential. He's an exemplary individual who brings prestige and recognition not only to himself, but also to our analog and mixed-signal program."
Hanumolu was studying at the Birla Institute of Technology and Science in northern India when a fellow student first took apart a computer, showed him a tiny chip inside, and described what happened within that chip. Hanumolu was instantly captivated.
"It still amazes me how these things work," he said, referring to the highly complex nature of computer chips. "In fact, I'm amazed they work at all."
Hanumolu's doctoral research at OSU is in analog/mixed-signal integrated circuit design, and he says he looks forward to working with his Intel mentor and the company's fellowship program.
"Intel's circuits research lab is one of the premier research institutions in the world," Hanumolu said. "And Oregon State has one of the best analog circuit design programs in the country."
Hanumolu's wants to apply his knowledge of chip design in the field of biomedicine. He envisions, for example, how bio-sensor chips will one day help people with diabetes wirelessly monitor their blood sugar levels and automatically administer insulin as needed.
"Biomedicine is an application of this technology that I think is very useful," he said, stating that his ultimate goal in pursuing a degree in engineering is to improve the world.