Shushman Choudhury

Robotics Institute, CMU


At CMU I was a member of Tech4Society, a group of graduate students who came together to put their skills to use for socially beneficial projects outside just their own research. Specifically, I was the coordinator of efforts related to climate change and sustainability. In that capacity, I worked with the organizers of the Data Rescue Pittsburgh event, which was the Pittsburgh leg of a nationwide series of hackathons to retrieve and backup sensitive climate data whose original hosts are under threat from the Trump administration. I helped with the event planning and logistics, coordinated with several involved organizations and also led the Seeding track of the event. Additionally, I worked with Jim Skees, the Director of Building Facilities at CMU's School of Computer Science, to identify important measures to increase sustainability within the SCS and Robotics Institute buildings.

I volunteered for the HEAR ME project in Spring 2016, an initiative by CMU's CREATE lab about gender bias in STEM fields. I interviewed children of the ALEC centre in Pittsburgh, helped edit several other interviews for circulation, and published a blog post to spread awareness.

I was a volunteer in the Indian Government's National Service Scheme initiative at IIT Kharagpur from 2011-13. As a member of the Central Team, I was responsible for documenting and publishing news of our activities (here is one of our newsletters) to improve the welfare of rural residents of Kharagpur, besides participating in activities myself. I was awarded a certificate for distinguished service.

Debate and Model UN

As Governor of the Debating Society, IIT Kharagpur, I helped introduce several undergraduate students to competitive parliamentary debating and Model United Nations conferences. I was in charge of academic affairs for the first three editions of the IIT Kharagpur MUN.

As a participant in MUNs, I was awarded Best Delegate at the NLSMUN 2011 and jointly at the NUJSMUN 2013, each held at a premier Indian law school. As a participant in debates, I was on the winning team for several inter-school debates in Kolkata, India - most notably being awarded the Best Overall Debater at the Statesman Voices Debate 2011 convened by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in India.

Hobby Robotics

As Head of the Technology Robotix Society, IIT Kharagpur, I was involved in several aspects of hobby robotics among students in campus. I helped organize numerous technical workshops and hands-on sessions for students both in my college and across the country, as well as creating tutorials in basic computer vision. I co-ordinated with a 3-tier team for multiple editions of ROBOTIX, one of the major inter-collegiate technical competitions in India.

I also competed in numerous technical events as a participant. I won the Best Algorithm award for the computer vision event of ROBOTIX 2012, IIT Kharagpur and was in the second runners-up team for the computer vision event of Techfest 2013, IIT Bombay.
I have also been a mentor in multiple IEEE certified Winter Workshops conducted by the Technology Robotix Society, IIT Kharagpur. I have guided undergraduate students to build a simple vision-enabled robot from scratch within a short period of time, with few off-the-shelf components. Here is an old video of a demonstration.