Kaushik Venkiteshwaran

Kaushik Venkiteshwaran, Ph.D. Student

Kaushik joined Marquette University in the fall of 2010. He is pursuing his doctoral degree in civil and environmental engineering, expecting to graduate in the fall of 2013. Kaushik was recently awarded the 2013-2014 Schmitt Fellowship. This fellowship is available to any student in a doctoral program. It awards approximately $17,500 in a ten-month stipend for the academic year. To be eligible for this scholarship, the student must be nominated by a faculty member, show leadership ability and a strong record of scholarship; they must also show a strong commitment to Christian or Christian-compatible ideals. In addition, these students must be actively engaged in their graduate programs, be full-time students, and must present a project that is in line with their doctoral degree and the Schmitt Foundation's goal to foster value-based leadership.

Kaushik earned his Bachelors in Biotechnology in 2007 from ICFAI University at Dehradun (India) and interned at the Indian Institute of Chemical Technology (IICT), an R&D facility in Hyderabad (India). There he was part of a research team harnessing bio-hydrogen from industrial wastewater by anaerobic fermentation and photo-biological routes. In 2010 he completed his MS degree in Civil Engineering at Clarkson University, Potsdam, N.Y, under the guidance of Dr. Stefan J. Grimberg. His dissertation research focused on improving methane production for on-farm anaerobic digesters.

Kaushik was attracted to Marquette’s program offered by Dr. Zitomer in the Water Quality Center because it combined both his interests in field of biotechnology and environmental engineering. The excellent laboratory facilities and along with the emphasis given to participating in national and international conferences, publishing papers and allowing students to come up with creative research ideas, also attracted Kaushik towards Marquette University. His primary research interests are to improve biological processes and develop environmentally sustainable solutions using biotechnological tools. Kaushik's current research project is - Bioaugmentation in Anaerobic Digestion: Linking Microbial Activity and Community Structure with Reactor Performance.

Since coming to Marquette, Kaushik has become very involved in student life. He is the president of the Central States Water Environment Federation of Marquette University. He also participates in the Association of Environmental Engineering and Science Professors (AEESP), the Water Environment Federation (WEF), and the Central States Water Environment Association (CSWEA). He has also given presentations on his work at the Central State Water Environment Association in Chicago last year, and the Water Environment Federation's Annual Technical Exhibition and Conference in New Orleans last year.

March 2013


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