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Nihar
Vaidya

Cohort 7

Hometown: Morrisville, NC

Major: Computer Science and Statistics & Analytics, with a minor in neuroscience

Research Interest: Neural networks, computational medicine, brain image mapping, and neurological pathology



My goals of pursuing higher education, getting involved with research, all while spreading diversity and inclusion in STEM aligned perfectly with the goals of CSS.




WHAT DREW YOU TO THE CSS PROGRAM?

Throughout high school I was highly involved in spreading diversity in STEM, so when I had the chance to apply to become a Chancellor’s Science Scholar I jumped at the opportunity. The program does an incredible job at promoting diversity in STEM, while also supporting students in their research and higher education efforts. My goals of pursuing higher education, getting involved with research, all while spreading diversity and inclusion in STEM aligned perfectly with the goals of CSS.


WHAT HAS BEEN YOUR FAVORITE CSS EXPERIENCE SO FAR?

My favorite CSS experience thus far was when helping out with the CSS 8 selection weekend. I was unable to attend the selection weekend for my own cohort, so it was great to experience how a CSS selection weekend went. Helping out with the selection weekend was an eye-opening experience for me, as I got to see the future scholars, and how impressive they all were. I was able to interact with many potential future scholars, and I loved being able to give any advice that I could.


HOW HAS CSS SHAPED YOUR CAREER GOALS?

My experience with CSS has allowed me to explore all the opportunities available to me. I was able to explore all the possibilities within STEM, and develop my goals to get more involved with research and higher education. The CSS network is incredibly helpful with peer mentoring and connections, that has allowed me to find all the opportunities that are available at UNC and in the industry.


WHAT IS YOUR PRIMARY RESEARCH INTEREST?

My primary area of research interest currently lies in neural network, computational medicine, brain image mapping, and studying neurological pathology. These areas allow me to combine my three interests in computer science, statistics, and neuroscience. Research is beginning to become more and more interdisciplinary, and these fields are quickly starting to produce meaningful research that is providing major benefits to society.


AWARDS AND HONORS

  • Selection Committee, Chapman Family Teaching Awards