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Class Notes: ECE

Degree Year
  • 1991

photo of Paul Hayre

Paul Hayre

Degree(s):

  • BS

I traveled the globe consulting in IT after Cornell EE 1991, returned States-side in 1994 to marry my Cornell sweetheart (HUEC '91, now a leading Pediatric Radiology researcher and clinician) and earned an M.B.A. at Harvard.

Since then, I started as an advisor, and now for the last decade have been a entrepreneurial growth strategist, both at the helm of start-ups and in multinationals founding new divisions in cleantech (tapping my Cornell EE atomic physics training in crystalline silicon solar/photovoltaic innovations).

Currently, I co-founded and lead a chronic wound diagnostic start-up, spending my time fiercely marketing our model for both seed funding and rapid commercialization. I'm very excited that one vein of our business strategy has us engaged with Cornell's Vet School to trial early indication of equine arthritis using our same wound diagnostic assay. Cornell is, for me, an ongoing and deepening relationship, and after spending time on campus in the summer of 2013, my kids kindled their love affair with Cornell and Ithaca as well.

Degree Year
  • 1998
  • 1999

photo of Andrew Hoffman

Andrew Hoffman

Degree(s):

  • BS
  • MEng

After graduating in 1999, I thought it would be a good idea to try my hand at the internet software consulting business, so I joined a small custom software firm in Boston. Unfortunately, the market didn't agree that this was such a great idea, and the company folded after four years. But I did pick up some great experiences.

Fast forward to 2004, and one of my Cornell professors was getting involved in a seemingly crazy idea to use robots to move shelves around in warehouses. I joined the tiny start-up and we grew the concept and the company, Kiva Systems, into a receptive market, eventually selling the company to Amazon for around $775 million and doing a lot of fun stuff in the process.

It turns out that coordinating thousands of robots in a warehouse is only 10% a control/EE problem and 90% a resource optimization and contention problem. Happily, the EE mindset of modeling a system and controlling its output applies nicely to this space, regardless of whether the optimization you are seeking is in hardware or software.

Degree Year
  • 2001

photo of Jim Liu

Jim Liu

Degree(s):

  • BS

I am proud to be a Cornell ECE alum and had four of the best years of my life at Cornell. Cornell's ECE department prepared me well and gave me the confidence to pursue and overcome challenges in various fields, including engineering, finance and now, entrepreneurship, in Asia. The extremely rigorous analytical training at Cornell's College of Engineering, together with access to the broad range of disciplines across Cornell, provided an invaluable opportunity to learn and to stretch my personal limits. Furthermore, the Cornell brand is very strong across geographies and the alumni network is a tremendous resource. 

After graduating in 2001, I practiced as a wireless network engineer at Nokia in Southeast Asia for a couple years, then moved on to sales & marketing and business development at Nokia before returning to school to pursue my M.B.A. at Kellogg. After working for a number of years in investment banking in Southeast Asia and Greater China, I recently joined my family business to drive its international expansion out of my bases in Shanghai and Bangkok.

Although I've worked as a "real" engineer for only a couple years, my Cornell engineering education has served me well in all of my other professional pursuits. After all, engineering is about problem solving, and Cornell Engineering provided me with the analytical training and sensitivity that are applicable in diverse fields such as tech, finance, and entrepreneurship and in a remarkable environment that fostered permanent, genuine friendships with my classmates.

Degree Year
  • 1961

photo of Richard L. Sharman

Richard L. Sharman

Degree(s):

  • MEng

After 35 years in laboratory and corporate management positions, I have retired and for the last 17 years have been teaching at Lone Star College in Texas. My undergraduate engineering physics degree from the University of Toledo and my M.E.E. degree from Cornell qualify me to teach courses in "business, management, marketing, and entrepreneurism." I guess that this illustrates how an engineering degree prepares students for many diverging career moves.

After managing the optics and infrared technologies section in a laboratory, I moved on to positions from product planner for reprographic machines, to VP of marketing during the early deployment of duopoly cellular service. Most of my career includes management positions in disciplines that can only tangently relate to engineering. I attribute the success that I have had in these positions to the problem solving and critical thinking abilities that engineering teaches and requires.

Degree Year
  • 2005

Chen Chow Yeoh

Degree(s):

  • BS

I graduated from Cornell ECE in 2005. Reflecting back on my time in Cornell, it has been amazing experience.

I started my career with Accenture as a Management Consultant, focusing in Customer Relationship Management. Subsequently, I joined JobStreet.com as Product Manager.

Since April 2011, I have been with Groupon, starting from Malaysia, initially. Currently, I am a Regional Operations Director for Asia Pacific. I also represent Groupon in its Observer seat in the board of Life Media Limited (Groupon's JV with Tencent and Legend Capital in China).

Selected as an Eisenhower Fellow for 2013, I have the opportunity to visit various cities in the U.S., learning more on education sector in the U.S.