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Outstanding Graduate + Impact Award + Convocation Speaker, Spring 2024

Joshua Kim

When choosing a university to attend, Joshua Kim knew he wanted to explore a new place away from where he grew up in Farmington, Utah. He chose the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University for the strength of its electrical engineering program.

During his time in the Fulton Schools, he got heavily involved in extracurricular activities. Under Matthew Marinella, a Fulton Schools associate professor of electrical engineering, he conducted research on analog in-memory computing, which heavily involved simulation work in the CrossSim simulator program and included running radiation tests at Mayo Clinic and Sandia National Laboratories.

“Dr. Matthew Marinella has been particularly instrumental in my growth as a researcher,” Kim says. “He has mentored, guided and taught me for the past two years as I’ve conducted research in his group. My college experience would be completely different without the opportunities he has given me.”

Kim presented his research findings in a research paper at the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, or IEEE, International Conference on Rebooting Computing in San Francisco in 2022.

Of all the research he conducted, Kim says the most memorable project he worked on was a proton beam test at Mayo Clinic.

“Although testing was supposed to start at 5 p.m., due to some technical difficulties, we were not able to start testing until a little after 9 p.m.,” he says. “I got home after midnight, but it was worth it. Between that night and the next morning, the results of the test were way better than our previous test.”

Kim has been supported by the Boeing Scholarship, the W. L. Gore Undergraduate Research Scholarship and the National Merit Scholarship.

Outside of research, Kim gave back his time as part of the Student Ambassador Program for the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering, part of the Fulton Schools, a role in which he helped new undergraduate students adjust to college life. He also served as a teaching assistant, president of the Tempe Institute Choir and an officer in ASU’s Latter Day Saint Student Association-Tempe Campus, or LDSSA, which offers events and community service opportunities for students of any level of religious faith.

As part of his work with the LDSSA, Kim conducted community service work such as collecting items to help refugees who settled in Arizona, repairing an elementary school playground, organizing blood drives and collecting food and clothing for those experiencing homelessness.

Kim is moving to South Carolina after graduation to join the U.S. Navy as an instructor at the Nuclear Power School. He’ll also continue his education through the online delivery method of ASU’s electrical engineering master’s degree program.

Long term, Kim aims to start his own company and make strides in bringing new power generation resources to the market.

“If I could be a part of any engineering achievement in the future,” he says, “I would love to be a part of making nuclear fusion a technologically feasible and commercially viable power source.”

Read about other exceptional graduates of the Fulton Schools’ spring 2024 class here.

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