Danish Saleem

Degree: Master of Science in Electrical Engineering

College/School: College of Engineering and Computing

After earning an undergraduate degree from the prestigious NED University of Engineering & Technology in Pakistan, Danish Saleem worked for two years at Descon Engineering, a multinational engineering services company.

With his eyes set on getting his master’s, he applied and was accepted to FIU.

He applied for internships, but experienced setbacks because he was an international student. It hit Danish hard. He had successfully represented Pakistan twice at international engineering competitions. He wanted to do the same in the U.S.

Danish eventually secured an internship at one of the leading labs in the world, National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) in Golden, Colorado. NREL is a federal lab dedicated to research, development, and commercialization of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies.

NREL offered him a permanent position, working under Erfan Ibrahim, the director of the Cyber Physical Systems Security & Resiliency Department at NREL. This January, he was promoted to lab manager in the cybersecurity department, and is believed to be the company’s youngest lab manager.

In addition to his work as a cybersecurity researcher at NREL, at FIU Danish worked on projects with the potential for global impact, from a 49.5 megawatt wind farm to a solar powered car project for the Shell Eco Marathon & Cyprus Solar challenge. Under the direction of Professor Arif Sarwat, he also collaborated on projects for FPL and the Department of Energy and as president of the Energy Club he motivated K-12 students to pursue engineering careers.

By Millie Acebal