“I chose GW because of the myriad opportunities DC provided for scholarships, internships, and future employment,” says recent SEAS graduate Sragvi Tirumala. Sragvi also knew that GW and SEAS offer “a vibrant social and cultural experience,” because his older sister had attended SEAS and he observed through her experiences the possibilities open to him.
Sragvi graduated from GW with a Bachelor of Science in biomedical engineering and went on to receive a Master of Science in biomedical engineering from Columbia University in 2019. Since graduating, he has founded several startups and earned a patent. He is currently an image processing engineer at Zebra Technologies
As an undergraduate, Sragvi was active in research, participating both in on-campus research with Dr. Murray Loew and in an internship at the Naval Medical Research Center. As he looks back on his time at SEAS, he says, “I have to give a shout-out to Professor Loew. The research I did in his lab directly set me up for the cancer classification image processing projects I did in graduate school and, ultimately, my career as an image processing engineer. I'm grateful to him for the opportunity to work in his lab.”
At the Naval Medical Research Center, he demonstrated his research and innovation skills right from the start. He explains, “When I first arrived as an intern at the Naval Medical Research Center, I was tasked with manual data entry from a spirometry device. After one hour, I decided enough was enough. During my ten-week internship, I went on to automate the data extraction process from a spirometry device as well as an impulse oscillometry device. The research being conducted using these devices was to ensure the health of Navy pilots, and I’m proud to have improved the efficiency of this important work.”
Wanting to explore other facets of college, Sragvi also elected to study abroad while at SEAS. He spent a semester studying at The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and he credits the experience with showing him “the pervasive influence of culture on our choices, and just how much freedom we have within our own culture."
Sragvi remarks, “Though I saw plenty of breathtaking sights throughout my travels, what stuck out most was the impact of culture on the actions of individuals. For example, I never realized how my value of individuality and self-expression were part of my American beliefs. Learning what made people different allowed me to better appreciate the universal similarities we all share.”
In addition to participating in research and study abroad, Sragvi also was involved in various campus activities at SEAS. He was correspondence secretary for Tau Beta Pi Honor Society and an active member of the GW chapter of the Biomedical Engineering Society. He also was the top ranked undergraduate “Super Smash Bros. Melee” player at GW.
While he enjoyed the variety of activities available to him, Sragvi thinks SEAS students now have even more options with the establishment of the GW Innovation Center. As he sees it, “Engineering is much more enjoyable through the lens of exploration, innovation, and ultimately entrepreneurship.”