WMU student receives $10,000 fellowship

Contact: Cindy Wagner

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A recent Western Michigan University graduate, Sergei Akhmatdinov, B.S.E.’23, has been named a Tau Beta Pi Fellow, earning a $10,000 stipend for graduate studies in computer science and engineering.

Sergei Akhmatdinov, B.S.E.'23

“Sergei has unequivocally demonstrated significant scholarship and leadership skills during his time at Western, and is a worthy recipient of this award,” says Dr. Damon Miller, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering in WMU’s College of Engineering and Applied Sciences. “Coupled with his intense work ethic and keen intellect, he will undoubtedly develop into an outstanding technical leader.”

Beginning in fall 2024, Akhmatdinov will pursue a Ph.D. in computer engineering at the University of Michigan, where he will continue his research focus on optimizing computer hardware to meet the ever-increasing computing demands of artificial intelligence applications.

As a student at WMU, Akhmatdinov participated in three significant research projects:

  • Computer security with by Dr. Steve Carr, chair and professor in the Department of Computer Science.
  • Capacitive touch sensors for haptic feedback with Dr. Massood Atashbar, professor, and Dr. Simin Masihi, assistant professor, both in electrical and computer engineering. His work on this project was supported by a NASA Michigan Space Grant Consortium Undergraduate Fellowship, led by Masihi. He worked with senior engineering design team members, Hakan Dogdu and Matthew Haley, to further explore haptic devices to enhance the human dexterity in teleoperation systems. The results were published in the 2023 IEEE International Conference on Flexible, Printable Sensors and Systems.
  • Prediction of field programmable gate array (FPGA) power consumption using machine learning techniques with Dr. Lina Sawalha, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering. His work on this project was supported by the NSF Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) program, with results published in the 2022 IEEE 30th Annual International Symposium on Field-Programmable Custom Computing Machines.

A 2023-24 Presidential Scholar, Akhmatdinov earned a bachelor’s degree in computer engineering with a minor in mathematics in December 2023. During his time at Western, he served as president of the student chapter of Tau Beta Pi for two years and was elected as vice chair of the Constitution and Bylaws committee at the 2023 Tau Beta Pi National Convention. He worked as a learning assistant at WMU, hosting in-person, tri-weekly recitation sessions for students in the Introduction to Microprocessors course. He was also a tutor of mathematics, computer science and physics at Kalamazoo Valley Community College.

Tau Beta Pi is the world’s largest engineering society and provides more financial assistance to engineering students than any other engineering society. Membership represents the highest honor to be obtained by an engineering student and is awarded based on high scholarship and exemplary character.

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Dr. Damon Miller, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, and Sergei Akhmatdinov, B.S.E.'23 and Tau Beta Pi Fellow, stand in Floyd Hall near the Tau Beta Pi Bent, the official symbol of the organization.