Publish Date: August 2, 2021
IIT Delhi Alumni Endow Indu Shrivastava & Serla Singh Chair Professor in Artificial Intelligence
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- The Chair will support research in the field of Artificial Intelligence at IIT Delhi
New Delhi: IIT Delhi alumni Mr Rupam Shrivastava and Mr Ajay Singh from the B.Tech class of 2003 have endowed the “Indu Shrivastava & Serla Singh Chair Professor” in Artificial Intelligence. The Chair will support research in the field of Artificial Intelligence at IIT Delhi.
Rupam and Ajay have dedicated the Chair to their remarkable mothers- Ms Indu Shrivastava and Ms Serla Singh respectively. They represent Indian mothers who have sacrificed their own education and career ambitions to support the careers of their siblings, husbands, and children. Both, Rupam and Ajay, believe that the present generation of successful Indian entrepreneurs, CEOs, executives owe their careers to their parents, especially their mothers.
Rupam’s mother, Ms Indu Shrivastava, learnt responsibility from a young age as the eldest sibling in a large family. She taught Rupam to be responsible, independent, and inspired him to develop multiple interests and expertise. She told Rupam to "keep learning so you never have to say - I can't do this." If it weren’t for their mothers, Ajay and Rupam wouldn’t be where they are today.
Ajay’s mother Ms Serla Singh had no choice and gave up school at the age of nine due to lack of financial means and the need to support her family. She instilled in Ajay the importance of education. Ajay recalls her saying, “I want you to achieve what I couldn’t, and education is the key for that.”
Ajay and Rupam added, “This Chair is our way to honor our alma mater IIT Delhi, which laid the foundation of our careers. We hope this Chair catalyzes innovation and research in Artificial Intelligence and adds a new dimension to IIT Delhi faculty.”
Ajay and Rupam currently co-head Frontiers Capital, an investment firm with a mission to support and invest in the brightest minds working on exponential technologies to solve humanity's greatest challenges. Frontiers Capital is focused on Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Quantum Computing, Life Sciences, Blockchain technologies and others. All these technologies will witness exponential growth over the coming decade and will impact billions of people globally. Ajay and Rupam also run a grants program that this Chair is part of. This program supports innovators and researchers with revolutionary ideas in applied sciences related to Artificial Intelligence, Robotics, Quantum Computing, Life Sciences, Blockchain and other exponential technologies.
Ajay's career includes over 15 years of experience in venture capital and product development. Previously, Ajay was at Samsung NEXT Ventures as Head of early-stage Frontier Technology investments in areas such as Artificial Intelligence, Quantum Computing, Robotics, AR/VR, Blockchain etc. In addition, he held product management and senior operating roles at General Electric (GE) and received several awards. Ajay holds a JD (corporate law) from Northwestern University School of Law and an MBA (Finance) from Kellogg School of Management where he made the Dean’s list.
Rupam's career spans 15 years of investing experience in the US, UK, Europe, Middle East, India, Latin America, and Africa. Previously, he was a Partner at DFJ ePlanet where he focused on disruptive technology investments in startups and public companies. He was a founding member of Vodafone’s African operations and helped launch businesses in multiple sub-Saharan countries. He was also a founding team member of Hat.exchange, a custody-less crypto exchange. He holds a double MBA from Columbia University and University of California Berkeley, an MS in Computer Science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and a B. Tech. from IIT Delhi, where he received the Presidential Silver Medal. He is also a CFA, CAIA, FRM and CMT Charterholder.
IIT Delhi continues to draw a significant and growing interest by its alumni on contributing towards research advancement at the Institute in technological and social fields. Chairs endowed by alumni, philanthropic and corporate donations support the eminent Institute’s ability to attract and retain high-quality academic talent.