Early passion for STEM and learning new things
Aashish Pendru has been passionate about learning new things, most especially related to science, since a young age. He obtained his Bachelor’s Degree in Electronics and Instrumentation in India and then was looking for opportunities to pursue a Master’s Degree, specifically in Power Electronics. He found the fit he was looking for at Missouri S&T in Rolla and received a Master of Science in Power Electronics and Controls in May 2015.
During his time in Rolla, it became what he considered his home in the United States. “Even now I consider that a home because it was the first place I landed here. The first six months I can never forget. Everything was new and nice for me, learning how things work here compared to where I came from. St. Louis became a second home to me because I used to come here often to get groceries not available in Rolla and watch films. There are a lot of Indian films and other events going on here. I really like it.”
His path to Nidec Motor Corporation began while he was working for a year in Marlborough, Massachusetts as an Electrical Engineer after he completed his Master’s in Rolla. Although he enjoyed his work for that small startup company, he decided to pursue other opportunities to continue the work he was passionate about here in the United States. It was while attending a Career Fair when visiting Rolla that he met an HR recruiter that got him excited about the possibility of coming to Nidec.
“I was looking for an electronics design position and at first thought they didn’t have any positions that were a good fit. But the recruiter showed me one of the controls that Nidec designs and asked me, ‘Do you know anything about this?’ I said, ‘That is exactly what I know. That is what I have been studying for the last six years.’” The position may not have seemed like a perfect fit because it was asking for more experience than he had at that time, but his expertise and passion were certainly there.
Persistence and passion pay off with a move to Nidec
Aashish also had the persistence to continue following up about the position that had him so intrigued. He remained in contact with the recruiter and, several months later, that determination paid off. “I always dreamed of doing electronics design and this—when I came here for the interview and they showed all the products they design, all of the work the position does, then I was even more keen to get into this because I always wanted to do this exact thing. I wanted a position I was passionate about. I could have shifted to IT if I just wanted a job to get my visa. This is exactly what I wanted to do.”
In the two years since he joined Nidec, Aashish has enjoyed his work with the Advanced Motors Group. “We do a lot of research and development work, developing circuits and electronics to control motors. I feel really proud to be a part of developing this new technology, because only a few people are responsible for taking the world into the future. That’s the best part for me. I like to learn new things and could study all day regarding new technology without getting bored.”
What most excites Aashish about his work at Nidec is the opportunity to pursue research and development as well as concept creation and innovation. “Taking all my theoretical knowledge, what I’ve learned during my Bachelor’s and Master’s course work and putting it into practical use in the real world truly excites me.”
He says that it was this hands-on, real-world experience that helped drive home a true understanding of the concepts he’d learned in school. “I understood what these things were, but I never truly understood how and why. So that was always an interesting question for me, ‘So then what and how and why is this important to me?’ It was when working on a technical investigation with big bulk capacitors that draw energy from the wall and store it for the motors to access that I had my ‘Wow! Eureka moment!’ I thought, ‘Oh this is why I didn’t get it for a long time. This is what it is.’ Now I really get it.”
Nidec invests in new products, new markets and its employees
Aashish has also been impressed by Nidec’s foresight in developing new products, new customers and new markets. “Nidec has bought over 40 companies to date and all of them seem to be always improving. Nidec had a view that eventually the market for spindle motors that made up the majority of our business would decrease. So, we expanded into HVAC, into compressor motors, into many other kinds of motors and today continue our expansion and investment into new resources and markets.”
One other thing that Aashish really enjoys about Nidec Motor Corporation is the opportunity to connect with enthusiastic colleagues in NEEC, the Nidec-Emerson Engineers’ Club. He is currently serving as vice-president for the club. Every month they have either a social networking event or a technical event like a TED talk or visits to manufacturing sites to learn what different companies do.
This opportunity to connect with people who are knowledgeable and enthusiastic about engineering and other STEM fields is something Aashish feels really sets Nidec apart. “If you are passionate about what you do, like a creative environment and thrive working in teams, Nidec is the right place because people here love what they do.”