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“I’m using my undergrad experience and my graduate experience that I built upon for my professional experience.”
For many students, it is a dream to co-op with a company, end up loving the experience, and later ending up working for that company full time. For Vineel Kondiboyina, that is exactly what ended up happening. But first, his journey started at Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University in Gujarat, India as an undergraduate mechanical engineering student.
“I attended a workshop in India that was done by MIT Media Labs, where we worked on projects related to synthetic biology,” said Kondiboyina. “I learnt about the applications of mechanical engineering in the field of biology. My mentor suggested that I should look into bioengineering, which isn’t common at all in India.”
After searching for possible programs to enroll in the United States, Kondiboyina stumbled across the program at Northeastern. He was impressed by the information he saw.
“I ended up choosing Northeastern because the program is well established, the location of Boston is a hub for the industry and the co-op program is really good for me as an international student because it helps me gain work experience in the U.S.,” said Kondiboyina.
After choosing biomechanics as a concentration, Kondiboyina ended up working with Assistant Professor Jessica Oakes for over six months on research related to lung mechanics, which eventually lead him to his co-op at Third Pole Therapeutics, where he was an engineering intern working on experimental devices and learning to understand the regulatory aspects of different products.
“Doing the co-op increased my interest in medical device design,” said Kondiboyina. “Even though I had already chosen biomechanics, I was highly considering switching my concentration to design of medical devices. Northeastern’s bioengineering program allowed me the freedom to choose classes to suit my career goals.”
Kondiboyina currently works as a mechanical product development engineer for Third Pole, a role he’s been in now since this summer after graduating. He attributes his current professional success greatly to the education he received at Northeastern and the professors that helped guide the way.
“…my adviser, Karen Kelly, helped me apply to companies outside of the database. She helped me connect with people on LinkedIn and showed me how I could apply for other companies,” said Kondiboyina. “Coming from a mechanical engineering background, Northeastern's program was so thoughtfully designed that it eases students into the core biology. It doesn’t overload them, it just gives them enough to apply to their day to day engineering projects.”
While Kondiboyina is very happy in his current work situation, he hasn’t ruled out the possibility of going back to school.
“I want to possibly get a PhD, but right now I’m focusing on gaining some industry experience. I worked with Associate Professor Sandra Shefelbine on my master’s project and she encouraged me to consider the idea of pursuing a PhD,” said Kondiboyina. “If and when I decide to go back for a PhD, I know that I can depend on the professors I worked with to guide me in the right direction.”