This month in the blog, meet Sheetal Chanda! He started in the R&D department then moved to the High-Volume Production team and became the resident expert on the PARMS coating machines that produce most of our product. Now as Director of Engineering, he keeps the R&D innovations alive, helping new ideas move into the production environment. His calm, reliable presence helps keep Omega moving continually forward.
Briefly describe your current position and what a typical day looks like
My job entails directing a cross-functional, bright and talented engineering group to support Sales and Production groups to reach their goals. Any typical day is a good mix of firefighting and forward looking work involving building of new capabilities or continuously improving processes.
What led you to working at Omega Optical?
Craigslist! Yes, Craigslist! I graduated from University of South Florida during the peak of the 2008 recession with a MS degree in Electrical Engineering. A friend of mine gave me a tip that Craigslist is as good as Indeed or Dice to find jobs. After submitting to 80 postings on Craigslist over 6 months, here I am. It was my experience with II-VI solar cell materials as a Research Assistant at USF which helped me find a job in the R&D group at Omega. We set out to work on small molecular organic solar cells.
Why did you choose to work at Omega Optical over other companies?
To be honest, it was the only job I secured at that time. But, I received a few offers immediately after joining Omega. It was hard to consider other offers given the challenge and opportunities to learn at Omega and more importantly, a good boss (Dr. Gary Carver).
What is your favorite part about working at Omega Optical?
This is the easiest of all questions. It is the people who work at Omega. Everyone is very welcoming, creative, hard working and compassionate. It quickly became my second home.
What have you learned since working at Omega?
If my parents gave me good values, Omega gave me an opportunity to become a better person. All the interactions with people and the technical challenges faced during my tenure have taught me valuable life lessons
What has been your favorite project that you worked on at Omega and why?
My first assignment at Omega working with Photovoltaics and Multispectral Imaging. We started at ground zero in terms of setting up labs and equipment. It was very satisfying to be a part of these efforts which led to many successful technology spinoffs and achieved the best power conversion efficiency in the State of Vermont.
Share a fun memory you made while working at Omega Optical.
My brief stay in the High Volume Production group will be my #1 fun professional memory. It was my first assignment with managerial responsibilities and the group made it easy and fun. They helped me believe in my abilities.
What is some advice you have for those pursuing a position in your field and/or at Omega Optical?
Photonics is the best field of study in the STEM categories. It is a great confluence of different fields of study and every academic major has a contribution to it. The applications are endless and knowing them helped my understanding of the world and the universe.