Priyanka Gupta (Ph.D. ‘23) | Alumni Spotlight

Priyanka Gupta
P.hD ‘23
Chemical Engineering
Academic advisor: Prof. Nishith Verma

Ph.D. – A Journey of Enriching Experiences and Transformative Growth

I embarked on my PhD journey at IIT Kanpur with both excitement and trepidation, uncertain of the challenges and rewards that lay ahead. Looking back, I can confidently say that it has been an incredibly enriching and transformative experience. From the very beginning, the support and guidance I received from my advisor, Prof. Nishith Verma, were invaluable. His expertise and dedication to nurturing my intellectual growth played a pivotal role in shaping my research. Prof. Verma's constructive discussions pushed me to refine my ideas and think critically, ultimately leading to development of a sound thesis and winning the prestigious Outstanding Ph.D. Thesis award by the institute.

One of the most gratifying aspects of my Ph.D. was the sense of autonomy it provided. I had the freedom to explore my research interests and design experiments that aligned with my vision. This autonomy not only fostered creativity but also instilled a profound sense of ownership in my work. Collaboration was another highlight of my PhD journey. Engaging with fellow researchers, both within and outside my laboratory, opened up new perspectives and broadened my horizons. These interactions not only enriched the overall quality of my research but also deepened my appreciation for interdisciplinary approaches.

The resources and facilities available at IIT Kanpur were exceptional. Access to cutting-edge laboratories, extensive libraries, and a vibrant academic community created an ideal environment for research. The analytical and spectroscopic characterization techniques available at IIT Kanpur, coupled with the support of staff at PGRL, Centre for Nanoscience, and ACMS, enhanced my academic experience immensely.

I must express my profound gratitude to Prof. Verma, whose unwavering support and mentorship have been instrumental throughout my Ph.D. journey. His guidance not only shaped my research but also opened doors to various opportunities, including bagging the prestigious PMRF and DST INSPIRE fellowship. His support in publishing high-impact papers was incredible. I have learned essential values from Prof. Verma—values of punctuality, honesty, and a strong work ethic. My Ph.D. journey has further underscored the significance of patience, diligence, and unwavering determination, principles that have not only impacted my academic endeavours but have also positively influenced my personal life, making me more mature and practical in my approach to challenges.

In conclusion, my Ph.D. experience has been an unforgettable chapter in my life, sharpening my research acumen and shaping me as an individual. I am eager to carry forward the torch of education and research, inspired by the memories of my childhood dreams and the unwavering support of my mentors and the academic community. For those aspiring to pursue a similar path, I encourage you to embrace patience, dedication, and hard work, as success is undoubtedly within reach. I extend my heartfelt gratitude to my advisor, peers, my parents, and the entire academic community for their guidance, encouragement, and inspiration throughout this remarkable journey.