Vikram Kapila received a B.Tech. degree in Production Engineering and Management from Regional Engineering College, Calicut, India, in 1988, an M.S. degree in Mechanical Engineering from Florida Tech. in March 1993, and a Ph.D. degree from Georgia Tech. in March 1996. From September 1991 to December 1993 he was a Graduate Teaching Assistant with the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering at Florida Tech. From January 1994 to January 1996 he was a Research Assistant in the School of Aerospace Engineering at Georgia Tech. From January 1996 to August 1996 he performed research at Georgia Tech as a Research Scholar where he also served as a Teaching Assistant and as an Adjunct Faculty.
In September 1996, Dr. Kapila joined NYU-Poly as a tenure-track Assistant Professor where he is currently a tenured Professor in the Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering. He has held visiting positions with the Air Force Research Laboratories in Dayton, OH. His research interests are in cooperative control, distributed spacecraft formation control, linear/nonlinear control, mechatronics, and K-12 STEM education. At NYU-Poly, he directs an NSF funded Web-Enabled Mechatronics and Process Control Remote Laboratory, an NSF funded Research Experience for Teachers Site in Mechatronics, and an NSF funded GK-12 Fellows project.
Under Research Experience for Teachers Site and GK-12 Fellows programs, funded by NSF, and the Central Brooklyn STEM Initiative (CBSI), funded by six philanthropic foundations, he has conducted significant K-12 training, mentoring, and outreach activities to integrate engineering concepts in science classrooms and labs of dozens of New York City public schools. He has taken advantage of students’ fascination with robots by using this as a hook to stimulate them to learn science, math, and engineering. His activities have proven successful in broadening the training and education of engineering students; providing challenging STEM professional development to K-12 teachers; and enriching the STEM educational experience of K-12 students. His activities have received broad coverage in major media outlets, including television and newspapers (Wall Street Journal, New York Daily News, Brooklyn Daily Eagle, News12 TV, ABC, etc.).
Dr. Kapila received NYU-Poly’s 2002, 2008, and 2011 Jacobs Excellence in Education Award, 2002 Jacobs Innovation Grant, 2003 Distinguished Teacher Award, and 2012 Inaugural Distinguished Award for Excellence in the category Inspiration through Leadership. In 2004, he was selected for a three-year term as a Senior Faculty Fellow of NYU-Poly’s Othmer Institute for Interdisciplinary Studies. In 2011, his GK-12 project received the “Outstanding Project Award for Efforts in Sustainability and Media,” from NSF’s GK-12 Fellows Program. In November 2003, he was inducted as an eminent engineer in Tau Beta Pi, The Engineering Honor Society, upon invitation from student members of NYU-Poly chapter, the NY Rho.
Dr. Kapila has mentored: 4 doctoral, 17 M.S., and 35 undergraduate research students and 11 undergraduate senior design project teams; over 300 K-12 teachers and 100 high school student researchers; and 18 undergraduate GK-12 Fellows and 59 graduate GK-12 Fellows. Moreover, he directs K-12 education, training, mentoring, and outreach programs that currently enrich the STEM education of over 1,500 students annually. His scholarly activities have included 3 edited books, 7 chapters in edited books, 1 book review, 55 journal articles, and 116 conference papers. Citation statistics (Google Scholar)—Citations: 2700+, h-index: 25.