Carleton is more than just a university to Dipak Roy. It’s the place where he met his wife, earned his PhD and laid the foundation for his engineering career.
“I learned a great deal from Carleton. I owe my success to Carleton,” he says.
That’s why Roy and his wife Tara are making the first donation of $100,000 — plus equipment for a sensor processing lab — to the university’s new engineering building scheduled to be finished by 2011.
The equipment will be supplied by Dr. Roy’s company, D-TA Systems Inc., to allow practical research in complex sensor processing problems. D-TA Systems will also provide financial and technical support to graduate students involved in specific research areas. Some of these activities have already started.
Sensor processing is a common requirement in most electronic systems, from radio, television and digital camera, to ultrasound. The Carleton lab will work on challenging future problems in sonar, radar, wireless communications, medical, test and measurements and other areas.
Roy says there’s not much research being done on sensor processing in Canada and he would love to see Carleton become a national leader in this type of engineering.
“My intent is more than just lab-specific. I want to create a centre of excellence,” Roy explains. “Carleton is the right place to do it. It has extensive grad research in engineering.”
Roy has contributed to Carleton’s religion program in the past, but he always had a passion for engineering.
When he heard about the new Waterfront Project at Carleton’s recent annual donor dinner, he knew he wanted to support it.
“Carleton has changed my life, both business-wise and my personal life,” he says.
Roy received his PhD in electrical engineering from Carleton in 1977. He started a defence electronics company called Interactive Circuits Systems Ltd. in 1978, which is now part of General Electric. Roy also founded, and is currently involved with, two high-technology companies in Ottawa and Washington.
Jim Wight, chancellor professor in the Department of Electronics, graduated with Roy. They often keep in touch, since some of Roy’s employees supervise Wight’s graduate students.
Wight says he and Roy have had discussions for the past three years about how he could give back to the engineering department.
“Dipak has always expressed an interest in contributing back to Carleton,” Wight says.
He adds that Roy, who came to Canada from India in 1972, also wants to help students who are coming from other countries to study at the university.
“His education at Carleton was a direct tie to his success as an engineer,” explains Wight.
Roy’s son is also completing a master’s degree in systems and computer engineering at Carleton.
“Dipak is such a dedicated Carleton alumni that he has convinced his son to come back and do his graduate work at Carleton,” Wight says. “It’s significant in the dollar amount but also significant in its symbolic meaning.”