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Monika Chauhan


Hardware Development Manager (AWS-Mechanical, Thermal and Robotics), AMAZON

At Corporate - Amazon (AWS), Chauhan serves as Server and Rack Design and Validation Manager, leading a team of 4-6 people working on server design using mechanical - structural, and thermal analysis and validation efforts.

Monika Chauhan, '19

Fondest memories of AOE...

Loved the time in VT AOE; My advisor, Dr. Massa and committee members' support were incredible towards my graduate success (accomplishing my PhD in 3 years timeframe). Dr. Lowe's support for my research as well as for my summer research work with Rolls Royce was an encouraging effort and best endorsement. 

Favorite Virginia Tech tradition...

Celebrating at festivals and events in Squires and on the Drillfield. I really enjoyed being on the Virginia Tech campus.

Who inspired you to become an engineer?

I was always curious to fix stuff at home including mechanical issues - TV, furniture, kitchen appliances, making stuff from available hardware items around the home using wood, screws, etc.  I never felt that it would become my passion to solve engineering design and challenging issues, but now I am an engineer doing the same work.

Challenges you've had to overcome in aerospace engineering...

Personally, I never saw any challenge being a woman in the AOE department. I was always treated fairly and never felt like anywhere I didn't get a fair response or judgment. I felt department administration were more courteous and considerate towards my need as a single mother to accommodate my office space so my 5 yr old could come and stay with me during work hours too.  

Faculty member who had the biggest impact on you...

Dr. Luca Massa (advisor), and Dr. Todd Lowe (co-advisor, committee member): I cannot be thankful enough for these two faculty who supported me.  I can definitely say these are the folks behind my research success and stay in VT as a graduate researcher. 

Where I've been in my career and where I'm going... 

With nine years of corporate experience,  I am leading my career to grow further in design expertise including CFD, mechanical -structural analysis, and thermal analysis. Currently, my work in Amazon is aligned to achieve the same.

How AOE equipped you for the "real world"...

AOE helped me get to where I can implement my solutions to real-world applications like aero-acoustics (noise levels) issues for Navy in the deck during take-off and landing. Projects are driven by real-world applications requirements themselves which gave graduate students an opportunity to solve those issues.

What you miss most about Virginia Tech...

Campus life and events makes you feel refreshed every other week or month outside of  your stressed and hard research work.

How do you stay connected with fellow Hokies?

Facebook, Insta, and Linkedin and definitely email and phone calls with faculty.

Current project that you're most excited about...

I am working on Amazon AWS platform for server and rack design. 

A woman who helped you get to where you are...

My mother, inspired me and taught me that nothing can stop you to achieve it in your life, and the strongest pillar in your life is your education and no one can take it away. Education will stay forever with you and can let you reach wherever you need to. 

In a family of only sisters, we all are inspired by our mother and we have five different engineers in our home - Mechanical & Aerospace, Computer, Electrical, Electronics, and Biotechnology. I am so proud that I am her daughter and she paved this path for us where we are now in our careers. 

Advice to current women studying in AOE...

There is nothing that can stop you if you have will power to accomplish it. There will be hurdles and obstructions but staying consistent with your efforts is a key to success.  


Want to share your story?

Contact: Jama Green

External Relations Manager