Zandehshahvar Awarded SPIE Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship

Mohammad Reza Zandehshahvar

Mohammadreza (Reza) Zandehshahvar has been awarded a 2022 Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship by SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics, in recognition of his research on machine learning for inverse design and knowledge discovery in nanophotonics.

Reza is a Ph.D. candidate in the Georgia Tech School of Electrical and Computer Engineering (ECE). He has been a member of ECE’s Photonics Research Group, directed by Ali Adibi, the Professor and Joseph M. Pettit Chair in Electronics and Nanophotonics, since 2018.

His current research focuses on developing unsupervised learning models for knowledge discovery in nanophotonics. Other research interests include medical image processing, active learning, and metric learning.

According to SPIE, the key criterion in evaluating and ranking applications for the scholarship is the "prospect for long-term contribution that the granting of an award will make to the field of optics, photonics or related field." This year SPIE has award $293,000 in education scholarships to 78 outstanding SPIE Student Members, based on their potential contribution to optics and photonics, or a related discipline. Award-winning applicants were evaluated, selected, and approved by the SPIE Scholarship Committee. Through 2021, SPIE has distributed over $6 million in individual scholarships.

Earlier this year, Zandehshahvar was awarded the ECE Faculty Award at the School’s annual Roger P. Webb Awards Program. The award is given annually to the electrical or computer engineering student who, in the opinion of the ECE faculty, has done the most to improve the educational environment within ECE or Georgia Tech, and has contributed significantly to both student welfare and student-faculty interactions.

Additionally, he received the 2022 VIP Outstanding Mentor Award for mentoring students on the projects related to machine learning for inverse design in nanophotonics and medical image processing for diagnosis and prognosis of lung diseases. Georgia Tech’s Vertically Integrated Projects (VIP) program is a transformative approach to enhancing higher education by engaging undergraduate and graduate students in ambitious, long-term, large-scale, multidisciplinary project teams that are led by faculty. Reza is the lead mentor on the AI-based Discovery and Innovation VIP team since 2019.

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