Hi! I’m Victor.
I was raised in the suburbs Northern California, near the Silicon Valley. I was born in an interesting family. My Mom is was born in India and my Dad was born in Russia. Me and my sister haven’t met anyone else with that background yet. Let us know if you find another Russindian! (Indussian…?)
Most of my early life I wanted to go into medicine like my Dad. My Mom convinced that engineering was my real love. She is an electrical engineer as well. She was the first women graduate from her engineering department and was a huge inspiration for me to be an engineer. She encouraged me to fly remote control airplanes and launch Estes rockets in middle school. Like all young boys, things that fly or explode commanded my attention.
In High School I learned how to program in Visual Basic and Java. I wrote a program that would remind you when and what maintenance to have done on your car. It was (very creatively) called “Car Log”. I entered it into a business roundtable competition and was blown away to find I had won! I received a $200 bond that is still maturing on my parent fridge to this day. It was around this time that I joined the FIRST robotics team. I learned a lot from this group about what real engineering is. It’s not a homework problem! You decide the answer!
I went from high school to undergrad in the sunny paradise known as University of California, Santa Barbara. These were some of the best years of my life, living on the beach with a house full of my best friends. During undergrad I played guitar in a band and learned to surf. Doesn’t get anymore stereotypical Californian than that!
In undergrad, I focused on DSP in my studies. During my last two years, I did research for a lab in the Electrical engineering department. They researched signal and image processing techniques to study biological data. I worked on a project called “Spatiotemporal analysis of the Flagellar Waveform”. It’s a mouthful but my work was pretty straightforward. I created image processing algorithms to track the propulsion tail (like a sperm tail) of a bacterium. The research was fun and made me decide to pursue grad school.
I applied to Georgia Tech and was accepted with two options. Option 1 was to go to Atlanta and pay $20,000 in tuition for the year and Option 2 was to go to the French campus and BE PAID with a teaching assistantship (tuition waived). It was a pretty easy decision and I went to live in France for a year. The only problem was there wasn’t much DSP and biomedical research there. So I switched my entire focus over to Semiconductor Photonics. While there I taught a class on analog filter design and ran the circuits lab. I was also Student Body President and did research on Ohmic contacts for Gallium Nitride.
Being in France allowed me to travel all over Europe. On my way home I decided to go the long way around the Earth and stop in Asia for a month and half. I visited Thailand, Malaysia, Cambodia, Vietnam, Japan and China. I’ve hit 32 countries now and plan to see South America and more Eastern Europe in the next few years.
I came to Atlanta to finish my Masters Degree. There was a lot of culture shock coming from France to the South but I found that I really like Atlanta. It’s now one of my favorite places in the US. The resources here in ATL for Tech and engineering are amazing. Georgia Tech has so many labs that students can use equipment like 3D printers, lathes, laser cutters, oscilloscopes etc. I used these resources to develop a wireless panic button for students walking around at night. I wrote an app for Android and created the hardware. It was probably the most rewarding and fun project I’ve ever done. It won 1st place in the Convergence Innovation Competition at Georgia Tech.
Now that I’ve graduated, I’m working part time for a startup company and also writing a book on Fourier Analysis with my mom. I am on the job hunt for a full time job. If what you read interests you (and I’m impressed if you actually made it this far), please contact me at:
Vlevin89 AT gmail.com
Thanks for reading!