KKT2015_Logo

Now in its 11th year, a unique, student organized academic consortium takes place this week in Daejeon, Korea. The KKT Workshop, sponsored by the Broadcom Foundation brings together the brightest students from Korea’s Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST), Japan’s Keio University and China’s Tsinghua University, all of which boost the most prominent microelectronics engineering programs in Asia. A three-day forum with more than 50 participants, KKT Workshop includes poster sessions, lectures, panel discussions and exhibitions. Students will tour historical landmarks and visit local semiconductor companies including Samsung.

Originating in 2004, KKT Workshop is the brainchild of three world renowned academicians in the field of networking and mixed signal technology – Professor Hoi-Jun Yoo of KAIST, Professor Tadahiro Kuroda of Keio and Professor Zhihua Wang of Tsinghua University. With the goal to create true collaborative synergies between students and graduates from their countries, the three professors put students in charge. The entire event, rotated between the three host countries, is organized and executed by students.

“It is a great honor and opportunity to run the KKT Workshop, a forum that unites top students and professors from China, Korea and Japan and promotes the exchange of the latest research and study in networking,” said 2015 KKT Workshop Chairman, Kyuho Jason Lee, a Ph.D. student in the Semiconductor System Laboratory in Electrical Engineering at KAIST.

New this year, the students will select four recipients from among their peers to receive research awards from Broadcom Foundation for best papers in signal processing, energy-efficient circuits, high-speed circuits and overall poster session. “We believe these awards will create a healthy competition and lead to even higher quality presentations by participants,” Lee said.

The KKT Workshop encourages participants to contribute toward major international technical conferences such as the International Solid-State Circuits Conference (ISSCC). The number of ISSCC chosen submissions from the three universities has tripled since the KKT workshop began. This underscores the importance for the brightest students in this region to exchange ideas and encourage each other while leaving the door open for future collaborations.

“The KKT Workshop exemplifies the collaborative spirit that is essential for future innovation in electric engineering,” said Nick Alexopoulos, Broadcom’s Vice- President of University Relations and Antenna & RF Research. “These students represent the next generation of innovators, and the KKT Workshop provides them with a platform upon which to launch ideas, share insight and forge academic alliances that will last a lifetime.”

KKT Workshop participants from 2014

KKT Workshop participants from 2014

“KKT Workshop produced three of the twelve finalists for the 2015 Broadcom Foundation University Research Competition, which gives one an indication of the intellectual fire-power the three professors are cultivating,” noted Paula Golden, president and executive director of Broadcom Foundation and director of community affairs, Broadcom. “We are privileged to sponsor the KKT Workshop, and look to this student-run event as a model for global innovation.”

But the most valuable outcome for students is the special bond established between fellow participants, professors and alumni. I can imagine how encouraging it can be for an international student to begin their career abroad and already have a network of people that care.