I am Shivangi Chugh. I graduated from IIT Bombay and moved to Cork from India to work at Tyndall as a Sparkle Marie Curie Researcher.

I studied Electronics Engineering in my undergraduate. I always was inclined towards science and technology, however, in childhood, I wanted to pursue a career as a Radio Jockey as I used to listen to radio quite often and be fascinated with the ease RJs carried out conversations. It’s the serendipity of life that I came across opportunities in the research field and I really like the journey and very glad it happened, the way it did. Sometimes it’s the joy of living the unexpected.

It was mainly my time at an optical fibre manufacturer in India. It got me interested into knowing more about everything that optical technology has to offer. Looking answers for all the ‘whys’ I could think of, for which I was fortunate enough to be encouraged by my peers and mentors and I continued my journey in the academic field.

The journey from being an Electronics Engineer to a Photonics Researcher has indeed been quite eventful. I was the first one in my group to start work in the Integrated Photonics field, from establishing the baseline, identifying right resources and partnerships to design, fabricate and validate the ICs has been very enriching. As the field was very new in my group, lot of times we had to figure different work-arounds in the testing of our hypothesis. However, I was fortunate enough to get very good mentors and peers who always helped and motivated me to pursue the journey.

One thing that I enjoy the most about being a researcher is that there is always so much to learn, so much to explore that one can ever be satisfied. My high school teacher always used to say the moment you become content, you stop growing.

Sparkle has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Sklodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 847652 and from Science Foundation Ireland.