I joined the PhD program in Computer Science at the Graduate Center in 2004. It was then when I met my advisor, Distinguished Professor Gabor T. Herman, who was the head of the Discrete Imaging and Graphics (DIG) Group, a research entity within the department to which I belonged and took part during the following six years. Professor Herman and the DIG group were a major influence while at the Graduate Center and helped shape my path as a student and as a researcher. At DIG we had visitors from all around the globe joining us for different periods of times.
These often led to interesting projects, discussions and collaborations. The overall experience as a student while at the Graduate Center was enriching: my weekly schedule consisted of interesting courses I had taken from experts in the field that were close to my line of research. Some courses that I remember particularly were of Image Reconstruction from Projections (Professor Gabor Herman), Pattern Recognition (Professor Robert Haralick), Image processing and computation (Professor Herman / Professor Haralick), 3D Computer Vision (Professor Ioannis Stamos), Algebraic Numerical Computing (Professor Victor Pan), to highlight just a few. In addition, we had a weekly DIG group meeting, a weekly seminar meeting, a personal weekly research meeting and a weekly computer science colloquium seminar following a social gathering afterwards. All these elements provided me with a rich environment that helped me thrive, enjoy, learn, be curios, and get familiar with the different types of applications that eventually led me to choose the field that I am involved with today.
In 2010 I accepted a Postdoc Research position at the Radiation Oncology Department at Stanford University School of Medicine. At Stanford I developed algorithms for radiation therapy treatment planning to which I received the prestigious Department of Defense (DOD) Prostate Cancer Research Award. Other projects included the development of algorithms for proton treatment systems, algorithm development for computerized tomography (CT) using photons and protons, and the participation in a large collaboration of researchers from industry and academia to build the first KV-MV imaging system.
Today, I am the Co-Founder and the Chief Technology Officer (CTO) at Siris Medical, Inc. in Silicon Valley, California. I lead the company’s technological vision and products that are aimed to revolutionize the way radiation treatment planning is practiced in clinics today. Using my knowledge in computer science, mathematics, physics and medicine I am able to help physicians reach better care for cancer patients. I do not think that the career path I had taken is an obvious one, at least it was not obvious to me when I started in 2004. The Computer Science program at the Graduate Center had certainly provided me with the tools to obtain the versatility required to get to where I am today and where I will be tomorrow.