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Students Rasha El-Jaroudi and Matthew Faw Awarded UT NXP Foundation Fellowships

NXP Foundation Fellowship

Texas ECE PhD students Rasha El-Jaroudi and Matthew Faw have been selected as 2020-2021 recipients of UT NXP Foundation Fellowship awards. The NXP Foundation Fellowship program provides one-year fellowships to support third or fourth year PhD students pursuing research in machine learning, artificial intelligence, millimeter wave radar and advanced microprocessing or microcomputing technology.

The NXP Foundation aims "to develop strong youth STEM programs and encourage innovation that makes a difference in the world."

"The NXP Foundation is committed to building STEM education at the highest levels of academic inquiry, research, collaboration and pursuit. We could not be more excited to support exceptional scholars focused on game changing innovation and technology that advances society and makes our world a better place. Right now, these future innovators at UT Austin are developing critically important talents and visions of extraordinary potential, and NXP is honored to help Rasha and Matthew realize these goals,” said Danielle Alexandra, Chair of the NXP Foundation. 

“The support provided by the NXP Foundation is an essential ingredient in providing our students with an environment for unleashing their creative potential and truly impacting the world in meaningful ways,” said Diana Marculecu, chair of Texas ECE. “We are grateful that the NXP Foundation has chosen Texas ECE and our students as a means to further their mission, and we are looking forward to continuing this partnership in the future.”

Rasha El-Jaroudi received her BS in Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 2015 and her MS in Electrical Engineering from Texas ECE in 2018. She is pursuing her PhD under the supervision of Prof. Seth Bank in the Laboratory for Advanced Semiconductor Epitaxy (LASE) at the Microelectronics Research Center (MRC).

"Rasha is one of those rare perfect PhD students – one with a nose for identifying important problems to work on, the creativity for figuring out how to tackle those problems, and the tenacity to make it all work," said Prof. Seth Bank.

“Rasha’s PhD research is on a new class of optically-active materials that can be grown on silicon. This could enable a new generation of efficient silicon-based lasers and photodetectors, which are essential for future on-chip optical interconnects to greatly reduce the power consumption of modern computing chips. There’s a huge potential to help reduce the world’s energy consumption."

"I would like to express my gratitude to the NXP Foundation for awarding me this prestigious fellowship," said Rasha El-Jaroudi. "The fellowship allows me to continue my research on the monolithic integration of direct bandgap materials on silicon as well as pursue my involvement in organizations dedicated to furthering women in STEM."

Matthew Faw received a BSE in Electrical Engineering, Computer Science and Mathematics from Duke University in 2017. He joined Texas ECE in Fall 2018, and he is supervised by Prof. Constantine Caramanis and Prof. Sanjay Shakkottai as part of the Wireless Networking and Communications Group (WNCG).

"Matthew has a superb technical background, and is very strong analytically," said Prof. Constantine Caramanis. "Perhaps more importantly, he is a creative researcher, able to see connections between different areas. His work tackles a problem of central interest in Artificial Intelligence -- how can we build algorithms that will do well on data we have not yet seen? His work thus far has developed techniques from Monte Carlo Tree Search to address this problem head on." 

"Matthew is very collaborative, and works well with others," said Prof. Sanjay Shakkottai. "Thus, we expect him to have a great career ahead!"

“I am extremely grateful to the NXP Foundation for offering this fellowship to me,” said Matthew Faw. “With the support of this fellowship, I plan to explore how ideas in differential privacy and invariant risk minimization can be used to design domain adaptation algorithms with provable generalization guarantees. I really enjoy working on problems that combine ideas from different research areas, so I hope to use the fellowship to meet new collaborators and find fun new applications for and perspectives on my work.”

The NXP Foundation is very proud to announce the launch of the NXP Fellowships to be implemented at Universities across the United States and Europe commencing with Eindhoven University in the Netherlands, Global Headquarters of NXP and the University of Texas Austin and Texas Tech University, at NXP's Texas US Headquarters.

"NXP Foundation looks forward to furthering our relationship with the University of Texas and the PhD program in advanced STEM," said Ms. Alexandra, NXP Foundation Chair.