#myRITstory – Nishi Prasad

Nishi Prasad 

RIT Program: Computing Security MS (projected graduation in 2020)

Hometown: Chennai, India 

Last summer Nishi completed a co-op with RIT and Eaton Corporation, testing embedded devices. The co-op opened doors for her at RIT as a student leader and connected her to the university and Rochester community. Through her engagement with the department as a Research Assistant and her involvement with Women in Cybersecurity (WiCyS) and RITSEC (a student club dedicated to “Security through Community”) Nishi has made a home for herself at RIT and is fully prepared to graduate in 2020.

Nishi has additionally been Co-captain of RIT’s Collegiate Pen Testing Competition Team (which took 2nd place in an international competition in November 2019), has instructed GenCyber Summer Camp, was chosen as the Computing Security Graduate Delegate for 2020 Commencement, and attended a Women in Cybersecurity Conference in Pittsburgh last March!

“My co-op over this past summer was with RIT and Eaton Corp. on testing their embedded devices (basically devices that are not as powerful as mobiles or laptops). My role involved performing a vulnerability assessment of a device given to the team by the company and test it for any vulnerabilities. Thereafter a report was written up highlighting any vulnerabilities (and their severity) that the team found in the device. I chose this co-op as it perfectly aligned with my interest in Embedded system security. Through this co-op, I developed a keen interest in penetration testing and reporting. And this just encouraged me to apply for the Documentation and Presentation lead on the CPTC team. So this co-op opened quite a few doors for me, some of which I never knew existed!”

Hear from Nishi in her own words via our YouTube video!

Interested in our Computing Security MS program? We are currently accepting applications on a rolling basis for the fall semester. Apply anytime online.

The Weekend Retail Shuttle

by Ankit Jain, Computer Science MS 

The weekend retail shuttle is a great resource for students who have limited means of transportation and/or are new to campus and wish to explore the communities near campus and stock up on groceries or catch a movie or play laser tag with their friends.

The shuttle operates starting Friday evening and continues until Sunday night. It primarily begins from Gleason Circle and goes to Park Point, Perkins, Residence Halls, Province and takes the students to the following outlets:

  • South Town Plaza (Trampoline Park, Bank of America, Dollar Tree etc can be found here).
  • Marketplace Mall
  • Target
  • Wegmans
  • Walmart
  • Regal Cinemas
  • Jefferson & Scutti Plaza aka Jay Scutti Blvd
    Some of the outlets here are Olive Garden, IHOP, McDonald’s, Chipotle, Wendy’s, Kohl’s, Texas Roadhouse, Panera Bread, Citizens Bank, USPS, Burlington, BJs, Michaels, The Home Depot, Denny’s, PiCraft pizza, Tim Hortons, Sprint, NaanTastic, etc.
  • Jefferson Plaza
    The plaza extends further ahead from the Jay Scutti Plaza and contains stores and outlets like Bar Louis, Sonic, Dunkin’ Donuts, Taco Bell, Starbucks, a couple of Indian restaurants, Chase Bank, etc.

Plan your weekend ahead as there’s a ton of things to do around RIT made easier by the Weekend Retail Shuttle.

Find the schedule herehttps://www.rit.edu/fa/parking/transportation/bus

You can also track the live location of the bus using the TransLoc Rider App that can be downloaded here: http://m.rit.edu/?utm_source=RITMobileApps&utm_medium=referrer

Apart from the Weekend Retail Shuttle, there are also two shuttles that take students downtown on Friday and Saturday nights respectively. The Park Avenue shuttle is the late night bus on Fridays to Park Avenue and Alexander Street. The Saturday evening bus is in partnership with RTS, to ensure students enjoy their nights out in the safest way possible while preventing individuals from drinking and driving. The late night bus on Friday to Park Avenue will have similar pickup locations as the Saturday night bus to East Avenue and Alexander Street. Pickup locations on RIT’s campus include:  Perkins Crosswalk, Lot K South, Tyler, Riverknoll (S Lot), and Park Point North. View the actual bus schedule here. All students may ride the late night bus to Park Ave for free with a valid RIT student ID, so don’t forget to bring with you. https://www.rit.edu/fa/parking/sites/rit.edu.fa.parking/files/pats/transportation/Schedule%20%20RIT%20ParkAveFridayNights%202019.pdf

Tiger East End Express TE3: The Saturday Downtown Shuttle also takes students to various clubs and bars located in downtown on Saturday nights and brings them back safely.

#myRITstory – Jinkai Qian

Jinkai Qian, Print Media MS

“RIT graduates work in the knowledge-based positions…in both production management and upper management positions…they are the most knowledgeable about color, printing, and pre-media applications, as well as the production workflow.”

Turning points are pivotal moments in life in which decisive change occurs. For Shanghai native Jinkai Qian, one such turning point was when a professor from the Master’s Degree in Print Media (MS-PPRT) program at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) came to visit the University of Shanghai for Science and Technology (USST). At the time, Jinkai was working on a Bachelor of Science degree in Digital Printing and was intrigued by the curriculum of the MS-PPRT program. Researching the RIT program further, he learned of the reputation of the program, including the extensive alumni network and impressive placement of graduates in meaningful jobs at major companies. This convinced Jinkai that his next move would be coming to the US to study at RIT in 2010.

At RIT, Jinkai went through the course sequence in the MS-PPRT program, which entails three academic semesters followed by thesis work. His coursework and thesis imparted the necessary skills that have helped Jinkai in his co-op experiences and subsequent career.

Jinkai names the STEM-based laboratory courses, which employ hands-on exercises that stress critical thinking and technical writing with the latest equipment as especially beneficial in his ensuing endeavors.

Jinkai took advantage of both Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT) for paid co-op experiences. Both of his co-ops were on the print production side of the business, first at CSI in Virginia and then at The Matlet Group in Florida. His responsibilities included color management, managing job workflows, working in the pre-media department, and order handling.

After his co-op work, Jinkai joined the vendor side of the business with a technical applications job at Techkon USA, a major manufacturer of color measurement devices with offices near Frankfurt, Germany and Boston, MA. Among the award-winning products offered by Techkon USA are hand-held and scanning spectrodensitometers, quality assurance/ink formulation systems, and even a spectrophotometer designed for flexographic printing that measures traceable metrics on a web moving up to 300 meters per minute.

Jinkai supports Techkon’s customer base throughout North America for installations and on-site training and support. His responsibilities require regular travel to major printing companies throughout the region. In addition to supporting clients, Jinkai is regularly in touch with the software and hardware engineers in the corporate offices to make sure that the new products and updates meet the needs of North American printers. As such, Jinkai has been trained on the latest printing certifications, including as a G7 Expert, BrandQ Supply Chain expert, and Certified Color Management Professional by IDEAlliance.

Jinkai cites the key role of his RIT coursework in obtaining his current position. He believes that this helped him to secure the job over several other candidates, and stands as a testament to the relevance of the curriculum.

When asked if he meets RIT alumni in his work, he responds: “All the time! I meet RIT alumni at both production facilities and trade shows: RIT graduates work in the knowledge-based positions…in both production management and upper management positions…they are the most knowledgeable about color, printing, and pre-media applications, as well as the graphic production workflow.”

Today, Jinkai lives with his wife and young son in the Boston suburbs and is pursuing US-resident status, intending to stay long-term. Jinkai recognizes that his job at Techkon USA, obtained as a result of his STEM-based Master of Science in Print Media degree from RIT, is integral to his aspirations.

Read more about RIT’s MS in Print Media on our program website here. 

#myRITstory – RIT Alumnus Nodirjon Siddikov

Nodirjon Siddikov

RIT Program: Computer Science MS, 2011

Software Development, Travelfusion, London, UK

“RIT education contributed significantly towards my career. For example, it helped me establish professional networks, unfolded the career path ahead of me through on-site job fairs and company meetups, and also increased my confidence during job interviews through coding exercises and on-site mock interviews organized through RIT’s co-op office. While I was studying CS, I concentrated on distributed systems cluster and carried out a research about applying a data structure called “bloom filter” in cooperative caching algorithms. I decided to go extra mile, and presented and published my research paper in academic conference in Las Vegas the following year.”

Read more about Nodirjon’s experience here, on the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs Exchange Programs website.

Nodirjon will be representing RIT today (Friday, September 27th) and tomorrow (Saturday, September 28th) at the Fulbright Commission USA College Day 2019 in London, UK!

#myRITstory – Payal Sharma

Payal Sharma, Print Media MS, 2018 

“The School of Media Sciences has tremendous resources to support student work, backed by knowledgeable and caring professors; this helped in maintaining motivation while gaining confidence in my skills and abilities”

In 2014, Payal Sharma was searching. Having completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communications and Journalism at St. Francis College in her native Hyderabad, India, Payal wanted to explore graduate study abroad in an area where she would gain the technical and critical thinking skills that are in-demand by industry, while learning in a community of dedicated academics and researchers. She also desired a program that was supported by active, engaged alumni, and highly regarded by industry leaders. This is when she enrolled in the Master of Science in Print Media (MS-PPRT) program in the School of Media Sciences (SMS) at Rochester Institute of Technology. Today, having completed her degree requirements and a one-year co-op, she is convinced that she made the right decision in choosing RIT.

The MS-PPRT program is a two-year, thesis-based Master’s degree in which students work closely with internationally-renowned professors in world-class research facilities. After three semesters of coursework, students conduct industry-relevant research that results in a published thesis. It is during this process that the MS candidates work closely with research professors to produce a thesis that is relevant and meaningful. In Payal’s case, her thesis exposed her to research methods and theories that provide a foundation for possible future advanced degrees and research opportunities.

According to Payal, these skills already paid off in her one-year co-op experience.

After defending her thesis in 2018, Payal embarked on a paid co-op at Wilsonart in Temple, Texas. Perhaps best known as a manufacturer of laminates, Wilsonart manufacturers and distributes an array of engineered surfaces. Having used the gravure printing process for decades, Wilsonart has now implemented cutting-edge digital printing technologies to supplement their gravure offerings. This is where Payal’s skill set, gained in the MS-PPRT program at RIT, made her an especially valuable addition to the Wilsonart research and development team.

Notably, Payal led a project to ensure consistent color reproduction for Wilsonart’s digital presses. Applying the knowledge gained in her MS experience, Payal set up the standard operating and process control procedures necessary to achieve consistent output from the digital offerings. Today Wilsonart is efficiently producing award-winning, digitally-produced engineered surfaces.

It is relevant to note that her direct supervisor at Wilsonart is an RIT MS-PPRT alumnus, who pro-actively looked for other graduates of that program to fill the research and development position, and spoke very highly of the school and its alumni. Her supervisor also stated that he is encouraged by the future direction of the school as the STEM-based MS-PPRT program moves to College of Engineering Technology.

Payal contends that students considering the MS-PPRT program at RIT should not be discouraged if they do not have specific print experience. “When I started my journey I did not have a traditional print background, here I learned how industry works, and have been exposed to many different aspects of the industry.” She recognizes that the SMS “…has tremendous resources to support student work, backed by knowledgeable and caring professors; this helped in maintaining motivation while  gaining confidence in my skills and abilities” and contends that her “…career goals are now more certain and focused as a result of the exposure to various aspects of the industry.”

Today, Payal has accepted a full-time position as a Digital Print Technology Specialist at Wilsonart, where they have agreed to sponsor her visa. She optimistically views her future career prospects, and feels fortunate to be exposed to meaningful and diverse working experiences in the US as a result of her Master’s degree.

Read more about RIT’s MS in Print Media on our program website here. 

Parking at RIT

by Yingshan Wu, Visual Communication Design MFA 

Credit: Tianna Mañón

RIT is immense, How can I choose the parking place?

RIT have 10 main parking places around the academic buildings and 3 parking areas nearby dormitory area. All parking lots have convenient, reserved, general zones for you.

They are:

D Lot and N Lot nearby gym and playground

E Lot, F Lot, G Lot and H Lot are popular and huge areas that work for the main academic area in RIT. They close to the MAGIC Spell Studios, library, facility, campus employees offices and SAU (the campus center). In addition, if you are student of

1.The E. Philip Saunders College of Business (Max Lowenthal Hall)

2.The College of Art and Design (James E. Booth Hall)

3.The College of Science (Thomas Gosnell Hall)

4.The Kate Gleason College of Engineering (James E. Gleason Hall)

This 4 parking lot also can be the nice place to park your car.

J Lot and T Lot are shared work of main academic area, the STEM student also can parking in those lots as well.

S Lot is another giant parking place for people to go to Global Village, Munsell Color Science Laboratory, University Services Center and The E. Philip Saunders College of Business (Max Lowenthal Hall)

R Lot and U Lot are small size parking lots,  If you are lucky, in ice hockey game day please go to the U Lot early, it super close to hockey field, The Gene Polisseni Center.

Although Riverknoll Apartments, University Commons Apartments, and Perkins Green Apartment have their own parking lots, the L Lot, K Lot and C Lot are parking places for the students who live in the Residence Hall buildings (A, B, C, D) and who are working in Student Development Center.

RIT provides those main parking places, which is super helpful to students’s campus life.

 

 

#myRITstory – Antoinette Defoundoux

In honor of International Women’s Day (this Friday, March 8th) we’re proudly featuring the stories of #RITWomen this week. Join us Friday morning at 9 a.m. for a webinar featuring our female students and staff as they discuss RIT history, opportunities for women in STEM, and RIT’s curriculum, research, and campus life. Register today!

Antoinette Defoundoux-Fila is from the Republic of Congo in Central Africa and is passionate about helping people. She has always wanted to work in the health field, and for a long time wanted to become a medical doctor. Since starting her studies at RIT, her new passion is to work in the research and develop medical devices. She is currently pursuing her MS degree in Manufacturing and Mechanical System Integration and is avidly working on her capstone project with her adviser, Dr. O’Neil. Antoinette’s project focuses on the redesigning of jet nebulizers (medical devices that are used to treat respiratory diseases) to make it adaptable to a hand cranked compressor. This system will be used in low income countries where access to electricity can be difficult hence making an electric compressor useless. Their work involves redesigning the nebulizers to make sure that the medicine droplet size stays the same dosage when using a hand cranked compressor.

When she is not in class, Antoinette is busy with the Women in Technology (WIT) group on campus where she can give (and receive!) support from other STEM women on campus and the program leader, Nykki Mathews. This serves as a place of motivation and support for her, where she can always seek help and get advice through weekly meetings and the other resources available.

Antoinette also has a passion for helping younger women become interested in STEM fields. Her favorite RIT event is the Girls in STEM fair. During the fair, female students of all ages (kindergarten to high school) from local schools come to RIT to enjoy a day of educational activities put together by female engineering and science students and professors. Antoinette loves the event because it “shows that science and technology can be fun, but also, at the end of the day a lot of those participants want to pursue a career in engineering or science.”

Antoinette will be leaving RIT this spring, but wants others to know what a special place RIT is, especially for women. “There is a club for everybody at RIT. This diversity helps students find a sense of community and belonging in whatever club you identify with.”

.Learn more about RIT’s Manufacturing and Mechanical Systems Integration MS program here.

#MyRITstory- Ajinkya Shinde

Ajinkya Shinde is a second-year graduate student at RIT. He began his journey as a grad student in January 2017 in the field of Electrical Engineering, but his passion laid in robotics and automation. This made him transfer to the Manufacturing and Mechanical Systems Integration (MMSI) department. The smooth shift between the departments helped him to take a step forward towards his passion in automation. It is truly said, “everything comes with a cost”, it was difficult for Ajinkya to get familiar to the mechanical terms as he had his background in electrical engineering, but his interest and dedication made him come over all those obstacles and perform exceptional in his current field of study.

Selection of courses and managing them in the time limit that you are given is another challenging part of a grad life. After he changed his major, he took the classes and electives in a way that can earn him degree in two of the different concentrations that are provided by the department. So, he could know more about Electronics Manufacturing and Advanced Concepts of Semiconductor Packaging.

The greed to achieve more encouraged him to push himself harder and in 2018, he started working as a Teaching Assistant for a Biomedical Engineering course, Control Systems. This was just the beginning and a step towards success. After that semester working as TA, he is currently working as a Graduate Research Assistant for Dr Martin Anselm. The research is in the field of Photonics. He is also working as a Vice President of SMTA (Surface Mount Technology Association) RIT Student Chapter. Thus, he has been successful in achieving and exploring all possible opportunities that he could at RIT and is hoping to explore more in the future. From the experience as a grad student, Ajinkya says that hard work and perseverance are the foundation to be a successful person”.

Learn more about RIT’s MMSI department.

Learn more about the SMTA Student Chapter at RIT.

 

 

 

 

 

 

#myRITstory – Rashmi Jeswani

In honor of International Women’s Day (this Friday, March 8th) we’re proudly featuring the stories of #RITWomen this week. Join us Friday morning at 9 a.m. for a webinar featuring our female students and staff as they discuss RIT history, opportunities for women in STEM, and RIT’s curriculum, research, and campus life. Register today!

Rashmi Jeswani, Information Sciences and Technologies MS

My name is Rashmi Jeswani and I come from the town of Indore located at the heart of India. I am currently a Masters student studying Information Sciences at RIT. I recently switched majors from Business to Information Technology and I am glad I chose RIT for that. I love reading; it is one of my most favorite things to do. I have recently discovered skiing and hiking after coming to the states and I have fallen in love with that.

Coming to RIT was a massive change in my life as I had never lived away from home and my family and this has to be one of the most challenging things I have ever had to do.

I arrived at RIT last fall and plan to graduate in the May of 2020.

I love exploring new places to eat and hang out on campus and have quite a few favorite spots on campus. Some of them have to be the ‘study pods’ on the third floor of the Wallace Library if I have to doze off after a long night of submissions or concentrate on a tough assignment, the Fireside Lounge when I want to hang out with some friends and get work done amidst great music playing on the piano and of course Java Wally’s for their amazing Shot in the Dark and small snacks!!

The thing that I love the most about RIT is that I have developed a sense of freedom and individuality ever since I have arrived here. The ability to manage things on my own and be responsible for my actions and learn from my mistakes. Also, the plethora of resources at RIT have enabled me to learn a lot of things outside the classroom: at my jobs, with the professors, with my peers etc.

The primary reasons that I chose RIT were the courses that I was offered, the Co-op program and the scholarship that I was offered. I had heard really good things about the university, the campus life, employment opportunities, the city of Rochester and I actively decided to pursue my masters at the university.

During my last semester, I got the opportunity to present an idea for a project to one of my professors. The idea was ‘Business Intelligence Tools for Inventory Management and Scalability’. My professor seemed to love the idea and still actively supports and guides me to try and work towards turning this idea into my final capstone so soon into my masters!

In the long run I want to see myself working as a Data Analyst for a reputed firm anywhere in the world and develop tools that can bring about a reasonable change in the lives of the people around me. This is my ultimate career goal, to do what I love doing!

There are a bunch of things that I love the most about RIT. I LOVE the campus, I love the snow (even when people will argue it is something that they hate), I love the two jobs that I am working and most of all I love that I am studying and doing what I have dreamed of doing for so long at RIT. The great places on campus, the amazing people that I have met since the first day that I came to Rochester, the sense of belonging, the resources offered by the university and how everyone is constantly motivating and helping you to strive for the best in your career makes me more passionate every day to go out and work even harder for it even when if I fail sometimes.

Learn more about RIT’s MS in Information Sciences and Technologies program here.

 

 

 

 

 

#myRITstory – Alyssa Recinella

In honor of International Women’s Day (this Friday, March 8th) we’re proudly featuring the stories of #RITWomen this week. Join us Friday morning at 9 a.m. for a webinar featuring our female students and staff as they discuss RIT history, opportunities for women in STEM, and RIT’s curriculum, research, and campus life. Register today!

Alyssa Recinella, PhD in Engineering

Q: When did you begin your degree program at RIT?

A: I started as a Bachelor’s student in Engineering Exploration back in 2011. I eventually picked mechanical engineering and joined the dual degree BS/MS program back in 2015. I graduated in December 2016 and began my doctoral program in January 2017.

Q: What is your expected date of graduation?

A: Currently, May 2020. But it all depends on funding! My degree may be extended by a summer or a semester. But the goal is to finish either in May 2020 or December 2020.

Q: Do you have a favorite spot on campus?

A: I have a few! I love doing homework in Java’s. I enjoy sitting by the windows in the engineering building to watch the rain or snow while I’m reading or having a conference call. Finally, I really enjoy the Fireside Lounge with a good cup of coffee and some music, especially when the fire is going.

Q: Do you have a favorite RIT event? Why?

A: Oh man, hockey!!! Who doesn’t love hockey? I grew up watching the Detroit Red Wings and I’ve loved watching the Tigers the past few years, especially in the new Polisseum!

Q: Are you involved in any clubs or groups on campus?  Do you have a special role in that group?

A: During my undergrad I was very involved in Engineers for a Sustainable World and InterVarsity Christian Fellowship. I had a few different leadership roles in both clubs throughout the years. Now I’m the president of the Doctoral Student Association on campus.

Q: What do you enjoy most about RIT?

A: There’s something for everyone. Want to go into the Greek system? We have it. Want to build machines that shoot foam balls? We have it. Want to play with Legos or build fake roller coasters? We have it. Want to stay in your room and play video games while a robot brings you soda? We have it.

Q: Have you completed a Co-Op? If so, how was your experience with the process?

A: I’ve had 4 different co-ops. All of them were diverse and ranged in expectations and experience. But one main factor they all had in common = it is what you make it. If I didn’t have work to do, I made work to do. And other teams became interested and I was recognized by more people. I was in new cities with no one that I knew and ended up with long-term connections and great experiences. Go in open minded of everything! You may not enjoy the work you’re doing but that doesn’t mean you have to have a bad time. You have now learned that you don’t quite enjoy that line of work but maybe you learned some awesome software or technical skills along the way. Stay positive!

  1. Research Assistant, Machinist, DesignerThermal Analysis, Microfluidics and Fuel Cell Lab at RIT – January 2014 – August 2014
  2. Thermal Engineer – IBM – January 2015 – August 2015
  3. Thermal Engineer – Carrier Corporation – May 2017 – August 2017
  4. Oncology Intern – Rochester Regional Health – May 2018 – August 2018

Q: Why did you chose RIT?

A: So many reasons. I had a lot of criteria when choosing colleges but the top 5 most important were the following:

  1. Co-op Program (RIT’s program is just incredible and that’s a fact)
  2. Finances (scholarship, tuition costs, housing costs in the area, etc.)
  3. Distance to home (for me, not too close, not too far away)
  4. The Engineering Program (ease of transfer into other disciplines, amount of other disciplines, esteem of the program compared to other schools, hands-on curriculum, etc.)
  5. Size of the school (I was looking at schools that had 2,000 people and looking at schools that had 50,000 people; RIT was a happy medium)

Q: Do you have a Research/Thesis/Capstone project you are excited about? Can you share some details.

A: Absolutely! I’m currently studying breast cancer detection techniques. We’re studying a non-invasive, no contact, no radiation method called Infrared Imaging. Although there is controversy with the FDA around this technology, most of it is based on the fact that there isn’t a lot of scientific evidence or exploration backing the technology. So for my dissertation, we’re trying to prove that this is a valid method that should be considered through in-depth scientific exploration and clinical trials.

Q: Do you have a specific career goal? If so, what?

A: Absolutely not. I know I want to work in Research and Development somewhere but I’m completely open when it comes to the field and the organization. I’d preferably either like to work in a National Lab, in industry (like a start-up) or in a government facility (NASA or the DoD)

Q: What are you most proud of/passionate about at RIT?

A: The answer to this question has changed every year that I’ve been at RIT. At the moment, I’m immensely proud of the growing PhD programs at RIT and my involvement in the Doctoral Student Association (DSA). We’re trying to get doctoral students in all different disciplines to collaborate in multidisciplinary activities, expose our programs to more local companies and alumni, get students out of the lab for some good free food and games and finally bring more people to the downtown area to serve the Rochester community. The DSA is a brand new organization on campus and I’m so proud to see how far it’s come in the past 2 years.

Q: In your opinion, what about RIT provides a sense of community?

A: I think there are certain activities or events on campus that make everyone feel proud to be here. But the biggest aspect is what I said above: there’s something here for everyone. People feel like they belong. We don’t all necessarily belong to the same groups but all the groups belong to RIT. And when people are happy within their own spaces, they feel closer to the campus and to the community.

For more information about RIT’s Engineering PhD program, or to explore other graduate school options, review our program list here.