Harpreet Dhillon, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering in the College of Engineering at Virginia Tech, has been named the Steven O. Lane Junior Faculty Fellow of Electrical and Computer Engineering by the Virginia Tech Board of Visitors.

The Steven O. Lane Junior Faculty Fellowship was endowed in 2004 through donations made in memory of the late Steven O. Lane, a 1978 graduate of Virginia Tech who was considered to be a leader in spacecraft antenna design. He spent his entire professional career with Boeing Satellite Systems; among his many accomplishments were 12 patents and several professional papers. The fellowship is presented to a junior faculty member for teaching and research excellence and is held for three years.

A member of the Virginia Tech faculty since 2014, Dhillon has earned a reputation of being a talented researcher, having consistently produced seminal research results that have been extensively cited and utilized by his peers worldwide. Clarivate Analytics (formerly Thomson Reuters) included him in their annual list of Highly Cited Researchers in 2017. 

Dhillon’s work has received five best paper awards, including three exceptionally competitive annual awards from the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Communications Society: the 2014 IEEE ComSoc Leonard G. Abraham Prize, the 2015 IEEE ComSoc Young Author Best Paper Award, and the 2016 IEEE ComSoc Heinrich Hertz Award. 

During his short career, Dhillon's research has resulted in more than 54 journal publications in premier venues, such as IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications and IEEE Transactions on Communications. He has also published more than 55 conference papers. 

He has secured or helped to secure a high level of sponsored funding to support his research, including five awards from the National Science Foundation and one from the National Spectrum Consortium. He is principal investigator in five of these awards. The total amount of these research awards is $5.4 million. 

Dhillon is also a highly regarded teacher who has successfully integrated several ideas from his research into his classes. His engaging teaching style has resulted in high rating from both his peers and the students.

In 2013-14, he was a Viterbi Postdoctoral Fellow at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles, and was named the Outstanding New Assistant Professor by the Virginia Tech College of Engineering in 2017. During his doctoral studies, he held short-term visiting positions at Alcatel-Lucent Bell Labs in Crawford Hill, New Jersey; Samsung Research America in Richardson, Texas; Qualcomm Inc. in San Diego, California; and Cercom, Politecnico di Torino in Italy.

Dhillon received his Ph.D. from the University of Texas at Austin in 2013, where he was a Microelectronics and Computer Development Fellow from 2010 to 2011. He received his bachelor’s degree from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) and a master’s degree from Virginia Tech.