Payman Behnam

Ph.D. Student Awarded NVIDIA Graduate Research Fellowship

Georgia Tech graduate student Payman Behnam was recently awarded an NVIDIA Graduate Research Fellowship for 2024-25 for efforts to advance machine learning systems. 

Behnam is among ten fellows selected by NVIDIA, with each fellow receiving up to $60,000. Awardees will participate in internships this summer prior to their fellowship year. 

Behnam’s research centers on high-performance and energy-efficient design for machine learning (ML) hardware and systems. He says this interest originated from his background in hardware, where he first recognized the important role of efficient systems in advancing machine learning. 

“The development of fast, reliable, and energy-efficient ML infrastructure is crucial for the overall progression of ML,” Behnam said. “I am drawn to the intersection of ML, hardware, and systems because individuals with a multidisciplinary knowledge base can significantly contribute to the creation of an efficient infrastructure that propels the field of machine learning forward.”’ 

School of Computer Science Assistant Professor Alexey Tumanov advises Behnam, a Ph.D. student in the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering. Tumanov runs the Systems for Artificial Intelligence Lab (SAIL) at Georgia Tech. 

Tumanov says developing a productive relationship with an industry research organization as a Ph.D. student is a beneficial experience. 

“I’m very happy to have been a part of Payman’s academic and professional growth and I’m glad that we have worked so well together and have gone through several successes together with Payman over the last two years,” Tumanov said. “I'm really looking forward to an even more productive future over the next couple of years as Payman finishes his Ph.D.” 

Behnam plans to pursue a career as a research scientist with leading technology enterprises. He is particularly drawn to cutting-edge research that advances the field. Behnam plans to use the fellowship to support his research endeavors developing systems for generative AI. 

“I am honored and grateful to have been awarded the NVIDIA fellowship. It is truly humbling to be recognized by such a prestigious company for my contributions to the field. This recognition reinforces my commitment to advancing research. I view this fellowship as validation of past efforts and an inspiration to continue pursuing excellence in my academic and professional endeavors,” Behnam said.