April 2019 Richard E. Merwin Scholarship Winners

IEEE Computer Society would like to recognize the latest Richard E. Merwin Scholarship winners. Each student member will receive US$1,000 and serve one year as an IEEE Student Ambassador.
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The competition for the Richard E. Merwin Student Scholarship spring cycle grew even fiercer this year with 119 applications submitted by the 30 April deadline. The spring scholars are likewise stronger than ever before. We would like to congratulate this cycle’s scholars.

The IEEE Computer Society offers $40,000 in student scholarships, from $1,000 and up, to recognize and reward active student volunteer leaders in student branches or chapters who show promise in their academic and professional efforts. This scholarship was created in honor of the late Richard E. Merwin, past president of the Computer Society, to recognize and reward student leadership. The Merwin Scholarship now has two application deadlines: 30 April and 30 September of each year (you may apply only once per year).

Interested in applying? Learn how to apply for the Merwin Scholarship

You can check out their bios below:

Alan AntoAlan Anto

College of Engineering, Trivandrum (CET)

Computer Science and Engineering

Alan Anto is in pursuit of a bachelor’s degree in the department of computer science and engineering in the College of Engineering, Trivandum. He currently serves as chair for the Computer Society’s CET chapter, technical coordinator for IEEE Travancore Hub. Anto was previously a student representative with the Computer Society Kerala chapter and joint-secretary for the IEEE student branch at CET, among others. He was also designer for IEEE CS Compute. He has successfully completed internships at Nissan Digital LLP and National Informatics Centre. He was second runner up for IEEE Best Engineer at the student branch of the College of Engineering, Barton Hill and first place in the system hunt—Ritu—and has received several scholarships.


Aashish AroraAashish Arora

Gujarat Technological University

Computer Engineering

Aashish Arora is studying for an undergraduate degree in computer engineering in Gujarat Technological University at A.D. Patel Institute of Technology. He serves as the chair for the Computer Society chapter at his university and a volunteer with the student branch. Arora was a co-organizer for the Inspiro’18 international event under the Student Professional Awareness Activity Program and ambassador for IEEE Day in 2018. In his spare time, he volunteered as the publicity and campaigning lead for Spectrum ’18, served as a Microsoft Student Partner for four years, and was the founding documentation lead for the Indian Society for Technical Education at the ADIT student chapter. Arora received a certificate of appreciation from the student branch and was awarded as a student of the year.


Salheen BakhetSalheen Bakhet

University of Engineering & Technology—Lahore

Computer Science and Engineering

Salheen Bakhet is pursuing a master’s degree in computer science at the University of Engineering and Technology—Lahore. He serves as secretary of IEEE Lahore section and as technical co-chair for the Paper Review committee of IEEE conference ICOSST 2019. He was awarded seven UCP Chair Scholarships and has won the Outstanding Academic Performance Award with first position in BSCS (Hons.). Over the years, he has secured distinctions at different class levels and remained at the top of his school, college and university. He has participated in extra-curricular activities and secured first position in national and international competitions. Further, he works with Amnesty International and the Pakistani Government for compliance with the United Nation’s Human Rights and Minority Affairs SDGs.


Peter EidPeter Eid

 CentraleSupélec and Georgia Tech

Electronics, Electrical and Computer Engineering                                        

Peter Eid is pursuing a diplôme d’ingénieur, a French MS-level degree, with a focus on electronics, at CentraleSupélec. As a top student, he was granted the opportunity to follow, in parallel, an MS in electrical and computer engineering at the Georgia Institute of Technology. At CentraleSupélec, he serves as the chair of the recently created IEEE student branch which works closely with the IEEE France section on co-organized events. As well as being a representative of the student body, he is involved in science popularization and sustainable development initiatives on campus.


Ankitha GudlaAnkitha Gudla

VNR Vignana Jyothi Institute of Engineering and Technology

Electronics and Communication Engineering

Ankitha Gudla is working toward an undergraduate degree in the electronics and communication engineering department at VNR Vignana Jyothi Institute of Engineering and Technology.  She is IEEE VNR student branch Computer Society chair. Gudla was PES Day ambassador, the outreach publicity volunteer for the All Hyderabad Computer Society Student Congress in 2018 and outreach volunteer for many events. She was selected for the VNR student force that takes up social issues, and was NCC (National Cadet Corps) cadet, representing Visakhapatnam as best cadet in Pre-RDC. She is the captain of the VNRVJIET throwball team. She was awarded second in the department in university examinations, third for a nano satellite technical presentation in the nationwide technical fest ATMOS, and second in the Hackathon conducted by Idea Labs for the idea SPEAK.


Naila Jan

Jamia Hamdard

Engineering Science and Technology

Naila Jan is striving for an undergraduate degree in the School of Engineering Science and Technology at Jamia Hamdard. She serves as WIE student branch chair. Jan was treasurer and senior Excom member of her student branch and event coordinator. In addition, she has been a core team member of TEDx Jamia Hamdard, a student coordinator at annual school festivals, and the host of the First International Conference on ICT for Digital, Smart and Sustainable Development. She has also medaled in basketball, played badminton, ran in a relay race, and took first in a fashion show at Media Mahakumbh 2018. She also received the (MOMA) Muslim Minority Scholarship. She is the highest CGPA holder in her department and over many semesters has held first position.


Harshita Kalsi

Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women (IGDTUW)

Electronics and Communication Engineering

Harshita Kalsi is pursuing an undergraduate degree in electronics and communication engineering at Indira Gandhi Delhi Technical University for Women. She is the sponsorship lead for the IEEE WIE IGDTUW flagship event WIEmpower and web development mentor for Momentum 1.0. Kalsi was student branch representative at the Delhi Section Congress, general secretary in the Senior Executive Committee of the IEEE IGDTUW, and teaching assistant for the Dil Se Campaign with the Rainbow India Foundation under the IEEE IGDTUW Humanitarian Program. She received the Wolfram One Award at HACKEAM 2018 and Best Pitch Award at Tinkerfest 2017. In her spare time, she has served as the Sponsorship Core Team Lead for Innerve, website development head coordinator, and publicity and public relations head of Taarangana.


Athira MAthira M

NSS College of Engineering, Palakkad

Electrical and Electronics Engineering

Athira M is a bachelor’s student in the electrical and electronics engineering department at the NSS College of Engineering, Palakkad. She serves as WIE Coordinator of the IA/IE/PELS Joint chapter for Kerala, coordinator of AKIASSC’19 and ambassador of IEEE IAS CMD Humanitarian project 2019. Athira M was previously chair of IAS student Branch and secretary for the Power and Energy Society at her university. She won the Central Sector Scholarship. She has also won the LIC Golden Jubilee and the IEEE Kerala Section Outstanding Student Chapter Volunteer Award. In her spare time, she worked as an intern at Kerala Electrical & Allied Co. Ltd, volunteered at the National Service Scheme, and developed a “Women’s protection device” as a part of a mini-project.


Krishnakumar M

Vellore Institute of Technology—Chennai

Electronics Engineering

Krishnakumar M is an undergraduate student in the School of Electronics Engineering at Vellore Institute of Technology—Chennai. He is the founder and chair of the IEEE Computer Society student branch chapter at his institution. He is an HPAIR Harvard Conference alumnus, has published his research work on IoT in an International Journal and has presented at an Internet of Things workshop. He is a chief mentor at My Ways, an organization that helps people make informed and independent career choices. He has also been a program representative, vice-president of OWASP student chapter and the head of partnerships at Renaissance (E-Cell). He has received the Best Project Award, IEEE Madras Section Student Project Funding Award, and has had four internships on Data Analytics.


Shriharsha MShriharsha M

The National Institute of Engineering, Mysore

Information Science and Engineering

Shriharsha M is studying in a bachelor program in the information science and engineering department at the National Institute of Engineering, Mysore. He has served as IEEEXtreme student ambassador in 2018, an organizer of the NIE Summer of Code 2018, and a publicity volunteer for the All Karnataka Computer Society Congress 2018. He was a participant in the IEEE Industrial Visit to Cisco—Bangalore 2016, IEEE Industrial Visit to Dell EMC—Bangalore 2019, and the annual meeting of the IEEE Bangalore section in 2018. Further, he is the HackerEarth campus ambassador, the techNIEks 2019 website convener, and software developer lead for DeshikLabs—among numerous others.


Axatkumar PatelAxatkumar Patel

Gujarat Technological University

Information Technology

Axatkumar Patel is pursuing an undergraduate degree in the information technology department at Gujarat Technological University. He serves as chair of the IEEE student branch at A. D. Patel Institute of Technology. Patel has served as vice-chair of the student branch, IEEE PES Day ambassador, and content lead for the IEEE Region 10 SPAA event, Inspiro’18. He worked on the IEEE CS Compute Edition 6 as outreach ambassador as content writer. He was awarded the rating of the highest-scoring student at his university for the second and fifth semesters and the best volunteer award from his student branch. He also was involved in the theater, acting in the play “Karunanidhi Ek Sahajanand.”


Vihashini R

Panimalar Institute of Technology

Electronics and Communication Engineering

Vihashini R has the goal of obtaining a bachelor’s degree in electronics and communication engineering at the Panimalar Institute of Technology. She serves as the university’s student branch chair, the PELS student branch chapter chair, and the innovation council chair. Vihashini R has been vice-chair of PES and IEEEmadC campus ambassador. She has been a participant in the symposium “Night Vision Technology.” Vihashini R was awarded the first rank in the department of ECE and first place in the inter-departmental paper presentation on biometric voting systems. She has successfully completed an internship on VLSI, organized by SPIRO Solution Pvt. Ltd. In her free time, she has conducted several workshops on technical topics, and an essay writing competition on the topic of the development of India.


Janini RamachandranJanani Ramachandran

S.A. Engineering College (SAEC)

Electronics and Communication Engineering

Janani Ramachandran is studying in a bachelor’s program in electronics and communication engineering at S.A. Engineering College. She currently serves as the SAEC chair for the Computer Society and Photonics Society, IEEE CS Compute content lead, SAEC chair for the Computer Society and Photonics Society, IEEE TEMS MMC content lead, IEEE brand ambassador, and documentation lead for the SAEC student branch. Janani volunteered as a content writer and publicist for several IEEE activities. She volunteers for Girl Script India and serves as Chennai section girl lead in the Madarasi Speakers Club. She received first place in the university examinations twice, second place in a paper presentation at a symposium at C. Abdul Hakeem College of Engineering, and third place in a mini project contest on the subject of automobile control using Bluetooth module.


Devarpita SinhaDevarpita Sinha

Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT Kharagpur)

Electronics and Electrical Communications Engineering

Devarpita Sinha is working toward a PhD degree in the electronics and electrical communications engineering department at the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT Kharagpur). She is vice-chair of the IEEE student branch at IIT Kharagpur. Sinha has served as secretary of the student branch, and reviewer for the IEEE Systems Journal and the IEEE Access Journal. Moreover, she is currently serving as the women’s representative of the department of electronics and electrical communication engineering and was the research scholar coordinator at the Gopali Youth Welfare Society. She has served as research scholars’ representative of the department of electronics and electrical engineering.  She won a PhD fellowship from the Ministry of Human Resource Development, Government of India and the GATE fellowship from the All India Council for Technical Education.


Kavitha Sri N

Panimalar Institute of Technology

Electronics and Communication Engineering

Kavitha Sri N is pursuing an undergraduate degree in the electronics and communication engineering program in the Panimalar Institute of Technology. She is currently the student branch vice-chair and chair of the Computer Society and vice-chair of the Power Electronics Society student branch chapters. Kavitha Sri N was previously the IEEE campus ambassador for BRAHMA’19 and FRIZBEE’18. She won the Vibrant Student Volunteer Award and Best Hacker Award. She has completed an Internship on telecom at Rttc-bsnl, Meenampakkam, Chennai. She has also competed and won medals in shot put, relay, javelin, sprinting and kho-kho, an ancient sport from India similar to tag.


Niharika Vanka

Vardhaman College of Engineering Shamshabad

Computer Science Engineering

Niharika Vanka is in pursuit of an undergraduate degree in computer science engineering in Vardhaman college of Engineering Shamshabad. She serves as vice-chair of the Computer Society student chapter. Vanka has also played a role as organizer for the ICMLSC International Conference on Machine Learning and Soft Computing and several workshops on data science. Beyond her work with IEEE and the Computer Society, she is an active member in student government. She has organized social awareness and gender sensitivity campaigns around the city, and a self-defense program for female students in association with WIE. She received the prize for being one of the top-ranked students at Vardhaman College of Engineering as well as the Government Merit Scholarship.


Varnana VijayVarnana Vijay

APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University

Computer Science and Engineering

Varnana Vijay is studying in an undergraduate program in the computer science and engineering department at APJ Abdul Kalam Technological University. She has served as the Kochi Hub coordinator for the student leadership committee of the Computer Society Kerala chapter, the Women in Computing coordinator for the College of Engineering Chengannur, and content writer for IEEE Compute. She has volunteered at a relief camp and PETA during the Kerala floods 2018, and participated in and won first prize in a poem recitation competition. She is the recipient of an internship at Ernst and Young, first prize award in a WIE competition at the College of Engineering Chengannur, and second prize in “i-code.” She attended the Grace Hopper Celebration India Job Fair in 2018.


Ahmad Azuad YaseerAhmad Azuad Yaseer

Islamic University of Technology

Electrical & Electronic Engineering

Ahmad Azuad Yaseer is working toward an undergraduate degree in electrical and electronic engineering at the Islamic University of Technology. He is the secretary of the IEEE IUT student branch and executive member/event coordinator at the IEEE Computer Society Bangladesh chapter. Yaseer was previously junior public relations officer and assistant member recruiter for the student branch, and campus ambassador for SPAC 2018, SPAVe 2018, IEEE BDS SYWMC 2018 and IAS CMD Humanitarian Project Contest 2019. He was awarded the “Outstanding Ambassador Award” at the IEEE Bangladesh Section Annual Award Night 2018. He was a runner up in culture week, receiving first prize in general knowledge and second in extemporaneous speech. He is brand ambassador of IEEE and outreach ambassador of IEEE-TEMS India.