2009 Simon Karecki Award Presented to Nandini Venkataraman

Anna and Richard Karecki with Nandini Venkataraman

The 2009 Simon Karecki Award was presented to Nandini Venkataraman, a student at the University of Arizona, at the annual research review of the SRC/SEMATECH Center for Research in Environmentally Benign Semiconductor Manufacturing on February 18, 2009. Marsaharu Kobayashi, Stanford University, was also recognized as a finalist. Following is the presentation made by Dr. Reed Content, Advanced Micro Devices, on behalf of the Simon Karecki Fund Advisory Board.

This is the eighth presentation of the Simon Karecki Award. This Award is given in memory of Dr. Simon Karecki who was a student in this Center and an SRC Fellow. Friends and colleagues of Simon have come together to create the Simon Karecki Fellowship Fund in memory of an outstanding young man and researcher, and as a way to encourage other talented young researchers in the pursuit of environmental research.

Before I present this year's Simon Karecki Award, I would like to recognize the Advisory Board and ask them to join me for this presentation: Walter Worth, SEMATECH; Reed Content, AMD; Duane Boning, MIT; Farhang Shadman, University of Arizona; and Tim Dalton, IBM, and from SRC Tim Wooldridge and Ginny Wiggins. I would also like to take this opportunity to urge you as individuals to participate in building the Simon Karecki Fund. And we especially need the help of those of you representing companies to strongly encourage corporate donations. Any member of the Advisory Board will be glad to discuss possibilities with you and tell you how to direct your funds. Further information is also available from SRC.

This year's selection committee agreed to recognize one finalist in addition to the 2009 winner of the Karecki Award. Marsaharu Kobayashi, Professor Yoshio Nishi's student at Stanford University, presented outstanding credentials, and we are pleased to recognize him as a finalist in this competition.

On behalf of the CEBSM, SRC, and the Karecki Advisory Board, it is a great pleasure to present the 2009 Simon Karecki Award to Nandini Venkataraman.

Nandini is pursuing her PhD in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Arizona under the direction of Professor Srini Raghavan . Her thesis project focuses on back end of line cleaning and involves the development of environmentally benign chemical systems using the principles of Electrochemical Impedance Spectroscopy. She is also attempting to develop a cleaning "end point" method, which would contribute to the reduction of chemical use. Nandini has presented her research at the Materials Research Society Spring Conference and at SRC's TECHCON 2008, and she has authored or co-authored twelve papers and conference presentations. She has a great understanding of fundamentals and appreciation of ESH aspects and is most willing to work with others in her research groups and to mentor undergraduates.

One of the criteria for receiving the Simon Karecki Award is academic excellence. Nandini has maintained a perfect 4.0 throughout her graduate work. She has held an Applied Materials Graduate Fellowship for the last two years, and before that, held a Louis Demer Academic Scholarship awarded by the University of Arizona.

Nandini held an internship at Intel during the summer of 2008 investigating the electrochemical migration issues in lead free solder pastes used in packaging. Intel was sufficiently impressed with her work that they offered her a job and so she will be joining Intel in Chandler, AZ when she completes her degree later this year.

Nandini's talent for research, leadership skills and strong interest in environmental issues make her an ideal recipient of the Simon Karecki Award. It is the decision of the Advisory Board that Nandini Venkataraman is eminently well qualified to receive the 2009 Simon Karecki Award. We are very fortunate to once again have Anna and Richard Karecki, Simon's parents, with us today; it is a distinct honor for us to have them here, and we would like to ask them to present the 2009 Simon Karecki Award.

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