Dr. Gil Delgado is a physicist who serves as Nova’s VP for Advanced Technology in the Materials Metrology Division. Gil shares how his path to success wasn't a smooth one, marked with language barriers, absences from formal education, and a lack of Hispanic role models working in physics. Today, he uses his story and passion for representation to not only position Nova at the forefront of tech advances but also inspire other underrepresented people to pursue careers in physics.

Gil, Your story is truly inspiring. Let’s start at the beginning. Tell us a little bit about your background. 

I was born in a very small town in Mexico. It was extremely poor, and formal education was difficult to come by. When I was seven, my family moved to the US so my father could find work. But we regularly went back and forth between the US and Mexico, so I was in and out of school constantly. It wasn't until I moved to Mexico City when I was 14 and enrolled in high school that I attended school with any regularity. So, I was very behind in most subjects.

Though I was behind, I worked hard to catch up. Science and Math were especially appealing to me. Most students have already taken Geometry, Trigonometry and Algebra which I have never even heard of these subjects before.  I taught myself algebra and worked diligently to improve my math skills, putting in many extra hours to learn outside of school.

I remember a pivotal moment: my first physics lecture. From that day on, I was focused on physics. The way the subject connected with my childhood curiosities and interests and lit a fire in me was unreal. So that lecture was important because it changed the course of my life and was instrumental in my pursuing physics as a career.

What an incredible journey! Tell us a bit about your educational background after high school 

My high school physics teacher saw my potential and encouraged me to pursue a physics degree. He suggested I attend college in the US since that’s where the best educational opportunities were. I followed his advice and came to the US after high school.

College in the US was very expensive, and I did not qualify for financial aid or scholarships because I did not attend high school in the US. I had to work three jobs to sustain my college expenses, but it was not enough.

After a couple of years in junior college, I was burdened with student loans and decided to join the Navy where I worked as an aviation electrician aboard an aircraft carrier and eventually became a plane captain.

While I enjoyed my life in the USA, I was homesick, so I returned home to Mexico to marry my longtime sweetheart.

After my Navy service, while my wife was pregnant with our second child, we both decided to enter the university.
It was challenging, but our hard work paid off.

I got straight A’s and was awarded the outstanding student title two years in a row. I eventually earned a bachelor's and master's degree from CSU Fresno and later, my Ph.D. in physics from UC Davis.

Can you tell us a bit more about your time working on your master’s and Ph.D.? I understand they opened your eyes to Hispanic representation in physics 

Yes, it was an eye-opening experience. While working on my master's at UC Fresno, I quickly realized I was the only Hispanic student in the program. I did some research and discovered that in 30 years, I was one of five Hispanics who graduated from the physics program. And when I looked into the rate of graduates of Mexican descent for Ph.D.’s in physics, there are only, on average, five graduates per year.

I also felt that there was general discrimination towards Hispanics in the sciences, especially physics. But I think it's partly because there are so few examples to look to. These trends can shift if we can recruit more Hispanics into the field.

All of this was astounding and discouraging to me. I know there’s a lot of talent in the Hispanic community and representation matters. I knew that if we could get more representation, those numbers could improve.

So, I took it upon myself to serve as a mentor and advocate for Hispanics in physics. I tried to tell as many friends and acquaintances as possible about the opportunities available, to increase awareness. And I’m always thrilled to serve as a mentor for someone considering a career in physics. It’s through this type of mentorship and advocacy we can start to see change in the field.

Your support of future physicists is admirable. Now tell us a bit about your work at Nova. 

I currently serve as the VP of Advanced Technology Development in the Materials Metrology product division. In this role, I lead the division’s technical vision and technical development roadmaps. It’s truly exciting to me because I’ve always been someone who has sought a challenge in my work, and I enjoy being on the cutting edge of the industry. I like to work on the most challenging problems that most people would not take on. This is what makes it exciting.   In this position, I am challenged daily as my team and I look to create new technologies in XPS, XRF, SIMS, and X-ray metrology.

How would you describe the culture at Nova?

I’ve been impressed with how focused everyone is on getting to the next level. Every team member works together for the greater good of the company’s mission in an effort to ensure we remain on the cutting edge of our industry. You don't see such cohesiveness in a lot of companies, so that's been refreshing. Everyone is continually searching for bold solutions to move us forward.

Nova's commitment to hiring and advancing underrepresented talent is also appealing to me. They've made a clear commitment to diversity and inclusion, and as someone who advocates for the underrepresented Hispanic community, this means a lot. The company's values align with mine in these regards, as I believe that our differences in background and perspectives only make us stronger as a team.

It sounds like Nova is a great professional fit for you. Now for a personal question: What does your life outside of Nova look like? 

My wife, children, and grandchildren are very important to me. I like to spend as much time with them as possible.

As far as hobbies go, I used to play soccer until an injury sidelined me. But I still enjoy watching the sport. I also enjoy hiking and go as often as I can. My wife and I enjoy being outdoors, so hiking allows us to get outside and spend time together.

Thanks so much for your time today, Gil. To wrap up, what advice would you have for someone wanting to pursue a physics career? 

Look for great mentors. Mentorship is invaluable and can give you insights you might not get from a college classroom or textbook. Especially for those in underrepresented fields, mentorship matters, giving them hope and encouragement. Don’t be afraid to reach out to potential mentors; many are willing to give their time and advice to help the future generation of leaders in the field.

 

 

Keily and Rachel were both excited to join the Nova team and work with cutting-edge technologies. Starting on the same day, they also found themselves in the same workspace, which sparked a friendship that has made working together even more rewarding.

Can you both tell us a bit about your journeys before joining Nova?

Keily: Over the last several years I worked an SCM specialist and logistics planner in wide range of industries, such as fashion retail and home electronic appliances. The variety worked in my favor, as it helped familiarize me with many different processes. I have always been responsible for overseeing materials procurement and coordinating logistic planning and this experience allowed me to develop strong coordination and cooperation skills with other teams.

Rachel: I previously worked at Sensata Technologies Korea, which is a global sensor manufacturing company. I was there for about four years as a Customer Service Specialist and I really liked being part of Supply Chain Management, handling end-to-end order fulfillment, forecast and revenue management.

What sparked your interest in the semiconductor field?

Keily: I've always been fascinated by technology and the way it revolutionizes our lives and I wanted to work at a technology leader. My interest was sparked during my previous job in electronic appliances, where I had a chance to dive into the PCBA of electronic devices. It was surprising how these tiny silicon chips could power devices we use daily like smartphones and computers. I love that I get to learn, grow, and contribute to the exciting developments in this industry.

Rachel: My previous company spun off from Texas Instruments, which is one of the key players in the semiconductors industry. During COVID-19, I personally was impacted by serious semiconductor supply issues, so I felt the semiconductor field will be a key player for all future business.

Can you tell us a little about your onboarding experience?

Kiley: It was a great onboarding experience at Nova, and I truly appreciated the warm welcome and support that I received as I transitioned into my new role.

The Lily and Sunil, from the HR team provided me with a comprehensive orientation program that covered everything from company policies and benefits to culture and values. From what I’ve experienced so far, Nova has an open communication culture, manifested through things like weekly team meetings and quarterly company meetings. Additionally, my manager, Liran and I hold one-on-one check-ins the really helped me understand my progress and where I could improve. Liran played a significant role in my onboarding process by providing supportive guidance for learning Nova’s systems and processes and making himself available to answer all my questions. The entire onboarding experience at Nova helped me integrate into the team and understand my role more effectively. I'm truly grateful for all the support I got.

Can you describe a typical day in your roles at Nova?

Keily: So, my day usually kicks off with a quick email check and a scan for any urgent updates. Then, I lay out my priorities and make a solid to-do list.

I start by diving into customer orders and making sure they match up with our shipment schedule from HQ. This means double-checking everything, making sure our orders are spot on, and coordinating closely with HQ to ensure we've got the products on hand. I also hop into team meetings, work with different teams, and have some good chats with our partners to keep our logistics game on point.

All day long, I'm chatting with my colleagues, talking to our transport partners, coordinating with the warehouse crew, and connecting with the different internal departments. Smooth and timely communication is key to keeping everyone in the loop and moving in the same direction.

It's a fast-paced job that calls for flexibility and a serious dedication to keeping our customers happy.

Rachel: My days are all about checking up on customer requests and orders, organizing shipments, ordering parts, and handling everything tied to our revenue generation.

Nova is known for its team culture. How has this culture impacted your work and professional growth?

Keily: I've heard so many good things about Nova's super supportive culture, and just like I mentioned earlier, having a mentor who's always ready to offer advice and feedback and a supportive team has really given my professional growth a serious boost. This support helped me build up my confidence and take on new tasks and challenges with a lot more gusto.

We heard that you both joined Nova on the same day, and that you work very closely together and in the same room. How has this impacted your friendship?

Keily: Yup, Rachel and I did start at Nova on the same day, and we're practically office buddies. Our friendship has been a real asset in our work. We vibe well, trust each other, and that's been a game-changer for communication and teamwork. We're both stoked to contribute to Nova's success, and we're committed to keeping that work-friendship balance on point.

Rachel: It's my first time having a work buddy who joined on the exact same day. Plus, we're the same age and seem to click well. Working in the same room has had a positive impact on our friendship, like our daily pre-work coffee ritual. I feel super fortunate to have met her, and I'm pretty sure we'll be friends for life.

Outside of work, do you both have any shared hobbies or interests that have brought you closer together as friends?

Keily: Oh yeah, outside the office, we're both big foodies. Since we're new at Nova, every lunch break is a culinary adventure as we scout for cool, local joints around the office and rate our finds. It's our go-to stress buster and an awesome way to balance work and play. These foodie missions not only tighten our bond but also give us the energy boost we need to tackle work with fresh enthusiasm.

Rachel: In addition, we're thinking of going out together for some evening adventures soon.

Keily, the logistics field is dynamic and ever evolving. How do you stay updated on industry trends and best practices?

Absolutely, the logistics field is a whirlwind of changes, and it's vital to keep up with the latest trends and practices. My approach to staying in the loop involves a mix of methods. I'm currently diving into my CIPM (Certified Planning and Inventory Management) certification, which gives me valuable insights into the ins and outs of logistics and inventory management. Plus, I keep my finger on the pulse by devouring resources like 'Weekly Trade' and 'Supply Chain Dive' and browsing through top-notch logistics blogs and websites.

I'm passionate about keeping up with the logistics game, and I'm confident that my commitment to learning will make a real difference in our team's efforts.

Rachel, could you share an interesting anecdote or story related to your time at Nova so far?

Just a week into my time at Nova, we had this online SSBO (Service Sales Business Operations) global meeting, where all service business-related global colleagues hopped on.

As a newbie, I was tasked with putting together a slide to introduce myself to the team. I must admit, it made me a tad nervous since I'd never done anything like it in my previous workplaces. But the team was incredibly welcoming, and the whole experience turned out to be a fantastic opportunity for everyone to connect via video call and get to know each other better. It might not be anything out of the ordinary for some folks, but for me, it's a memory I'll always cherish.

What do you find most rewarding about working at Nova?

Rachel: The best part for me is the potential for a business trip. Other than my time in overseas sales at my previous company, I never really had the opportunity for one, which was a bit of a downer.

Keily: For me, the most rewarding aspect is the collaborative and supportive culture. Right from my initial stages during the interview process, I could feel the strong sense of teamwork and shared objectives among the team members.

Are there any role models or mentors within Nova who have inspired you in your career journey?

Rachel: I really look up to Michal Benifla Lumbroso. My third job interview lasted about 30 minutes with Michal. Despite the short interaction, I could sense her passion and enthusiasm as a female leader.

Our conversation left me with the feeling that with the right skills, drive, and capability, I could seize new opportunities as they come my way here at Nova.

I've noticed that Nova is actively recruiting more female employees, and I see it as a positive step forward. To me, Michal represents the fact that there's no limit to what can be achieved at Nova, and that was a major factor in my decision to join the team.  😊

 

Starting as a financial assistant, Jessica's journey at Nova Taiwan took an exciting turn to become a service coordinator. Her role blends expertise with building customer connections, all while being backed by the Nova family's support. Jessica's story captures the spirit of growth, teamwork, and lasting bonds at Nova Taiwan. 

Jessica, you've been with Nova Taiwan for many years, and your role as a service coordinator is crucial in ensuring smooth operations. Can you share with us how your journey at Nova began and what motivated you to stay with the company for so long?

Back in the day, I started out as a financial assistant here at Nova, and after about a year and a half, an exciting opportunity came knocking. Nova saw potential in me and entrusted me with the role of a service coordinator, which I've been owning ever since. Being a service coordinator might sound like a walk in the park, but trust me, it's more like an intricate dance where I need to showcase not only my professional prowess but also play matchmaker between our customers and various Nova teams.

It's a challenging role, but the magic lies in the people I'm fortunate to collaborate with. The camaraderie here is beyond compare; my colleagues are as welcoming as a warm family. Ready to lend a hand, they're the wind beneath my wings, lifting me up when the going gets tough. So, while it might get chaotic at times, the unity and support from my Nova family fuel my drive and keep me moving ahead.

As someone who interacts closely with customers, what do you enjoy most about your role as a service coordinator at Nova Taiwan?

For me, it's all about ticking off those customer demands and crafting solutions that respond to their needs and requests. There's an undeniable sense of fulfillment when I receive those heartfelt "thank you" messages from our users. It's like a validation that we're not just providing services, but genuinely making a positive impact.

Can you tell us about a particularly memorable or challenging customer service experience that you've encountered at Nova Taiwan?

Back when I started as an AP coordinator, collaborating with FSEs from various countries for quarterly inventory counts was an unforgettable adventure. The diversity of cultures and perspectives added an extra layer of complexity, making it a truly memorable learning experience. Additionally, catering to users from different countries exposed me to the importance of tailoring our services to resonate with distinct cultural nuances. It's these encounters that shape our adaptability and enrich our professional growth.

As part of the Nova Taiwan team, what do you value most about the company's culture and work environment?

At Nova, it's more than just a workplace; it's a family where mutual support and collaboration are at the core. Within this close-knit community, you're never alone in facing challenges, and the collective spirit ensures that everyone's contributions are acknowledged and valued.

Lastly, what are your aspirations for the future, both personally and professionally, as part of the Nova Taiwan family?

One of my significant aspirations is to celebrate my 25th and 30th anniversaries with Nova, marking milestones in my journey within the Nova Taiwan family.

 

Meet our forward-thinking physicists: Dora Kholmiansky, Elad Schleifer, Eyal Cohen, Hadas Inbar, Samdar Farber, and Yael Kurtzweil Segev who are shaping the future.

They all made a pivotal career choice by transitioning from academic laboratories to the cutting-edge world of industrial technology. We've gathered them here to share their invaluable experiences and engage in an enlightening discussion.

The academia is often seen as a nurturing but challenging environment for talented physicists. What sparked the idea to transition from academia to an industrial career?

Elad: During our time at Givat Ram, the academy sometimes sheltered us from the realities of the industry. I've often heard the notion that "research only happens in academia," which is a perspective I strongly disagree with. Personally, I found the work environment in academia to be less suitable for me. I didn't want to spend my days writing grants and chasing funding; I wanted to be hands-on with research most of the time. Looking back, these experiences prepared me for my initial role at Nova. The significant advantage of transitioning to Nova was the availability of budgets, allowing me to focus on my research without the constant worry about funding, as Nova provides the necessary resources for this work to thrive.

Yael: During my master's degree, I conducted captivating research and worked on a specific device. I aspired to create something meaningful, to make a positive impact in the world. In academia, this direction wasn't the norm; it wasn't where the focus lay. I sought a place where things operated differently, where this aspiration could find its home.

Smadar: I realized that the passion to pursue a doctorate wasn't within me. While I had my doubts and thoughts, it became evident that my path was leading me from academia into the industry.

So, you made the significant decision to transition into the industry - did this change meet your expectations?

Dora: I was looking for a blend of three key factors: the opportunity to thrive in a supportive professional environment that respects employees' personal time, a setting conducive to professional growth, and, of course, the chance to collaborate with exceptional colleagues. Truth be told, I discovered all three aspects right here at Nova.

Hadas: Indeed, Dora joined Nova while she was pregnant in her second trimester, which, in my view, speaks highly of the company's values and underscores the presence of the very parameters Dora highlighted. In my case, close friends who had already experienced working at Nova highly recommended it to me. The transition from academia to industry not only met but also exceeded my expectations.

Yael: The immense thrill, for me, lies in witnessing the devices we work on being utilized daily in the market, benefiting our customers, and transforming lives. This excitement far surpasses the satisfaction of seeing an article I contributed to being published in a lab.

Elad: A close friend of mine back then told me, "Come on, you'll find it fascinating, join Nova, you won't regret it" - and I wholeheartedly agree, to this day I have no regrets.

Can you share a personal experience from your initial days at Nova that still stands out in your memory?

Smadar: My personal experience is intertwined with my daily life. I've been able to be there for my children and actively participate in their upbringing, which is very important to me. Simultaneously, I've also made significant progress within the company. It may sound hectic, but Nova enables this balance. Nova recognizes and values its employees, considering all aspects of their lives. This isn't just beneficial for parents; even those without children can leave work at 4:00 pm or engage in personal development opportunities, all of which are highly encouraged here.

Yael: As a mother of six children, I fully agree with Smadar. Nova offers me the flexibility to strike a balance between my professional growth and spending quality time with my family. Even my boss prioritizes family time with two or three afternoons a week blocked off. The only "reprimand" I've received since joining Nova was for scheduling a meeting at 4:00 p.m., with a gentle reminder that we try to avoid such scheduling unless it's absolutely necessary, out of respect for our employees' family commitments.

How does your professional experience at Nova differ from your previous positions elsewhere?

Smadar: From a professional perspective, like in any other workplace, there are tasks and projects to be managed. However, what sets Nova apart is the freedom and creativity embedded in every task or project. Here, we have the opportunity to explore and cultivate our ideas in directions we're passionate about. Nova encourages innovation, and employee-generated ideas have the potential to make a real impact beyond our organization.

Elad: Nova's commitment to technology and innovation is best demonstrated by our annual internal innovation competition, where employees are encouraged to present new ideas. This competition underscores Nova's dedication to excellence, fostering originality, and encouraging innovative thinking. It's a part of our company's DNA, a rare commitment to development and technology that sets Nova apart in the corporate world.

Hadas: Our work involves developing machines and technologies that will be integrated into Nova's tools in the future, typically within 5-8 years. However, there are instances where what I work on today can have an immediate impact. Sometimes, it's a product with a short development timeline, while other times, it's about solving urgent issues for a customer's machine. In essence, much of what we do involves research and problem-solving, driving innovation across the board.

Every challenge or problem that arises is like a unique puzzle waiting to be solved. We need to find solutions that are one-of-a-kind, something that no other company has. The real value comes when we not only solve these problems but implement these solutions into working machines that produce chips used in various applications. It's truly incredible to see the impact of the solutions we create, even in our everyday devices like my personal mobile phone. It's amazing how our work extends to so many areas.

Are there any other unique advantages to working at Nova that you haven't experienced in other companies?

Elad: I believe the positive atmosphere is quite noticeable here. Furthermore, being an Israeli company brings unique advantages. Our previous CEO, an Israeli, was recognized by 'Calcalist' as the best CEO in Israel among companies in the Tel Aviv 35 index. Our current CEO is also Israeli, and he has risen through the ranks within the company. One significant benefit is the accessibility to talk to anyone within the company, regardless of their position, and knowing that your input will be taken seriously. Nova isn't a massive corporation, so decisions made at the headquarters, even if they're in another country, have a direct impact on us. However, we are part of the headquarters here, which grants us influence. This kind of atmosphere, in my opinion, holds tremendous significance. I often describe it as a "start-up - family" culture, and that's what captivates me about the company. I've been with Nova for five years now, and I genuinely look forward to coming to work each day, which I believe is one of the reasons for my enduring enthusiasm.

Yael: I couldn't agree more. Although we're not a small company anymore, Nova has managed to retain a social and familial atmosphere, which is something that often gets lost in larger organizations. The fact that we are an Israeli company, with management and the core of our research based here in Israel, truly makes a difference. This isn't limited to those working in research; it has an impact on the entire company. For example, if Elad (Schleifer), who is now in development, comes up with an idea, he can simply stroll down the hall to the research division and collaborate on deep-level innovations. If Schleifer has a promising idea, he might be told, "Alright, allocate 70% of your time to develop this idea." Personally, I was seeking an environment that would allow me to cultivate and bring to life the skills I've acquired, and what's happening here at Nova is, in my eyes, ideal.

Inspiring! Many thanks to our senior physicists for sharing their experiences and insights. We're delighted that you made the transition to industry and that you're contributing your expertise here at Nova.

With a background in material science and a passion for innovation, Dr. Xinrui Lyu's inspiring path unfolds from her days of scientific fascination to becoming a pivotal member of Nova's DMD department. Through challenges, accomplishments, and a profound commitment to her role, her story reflects the thriving spirit of women in engineering and technology, showcasing the profound impact of diversity and ingenuity within the field.

Could you please tell us a bit about yourself, your current position, the duration of your time at Nova, and your academic background?

I have been a part of the Nova team for three years now, serving as a Senior Application Engineer within the DMD department. My journey with Nova began immediately after completing my Ph.D. in material science.

At what age did you realize you were interested in STEM?

When I was in middle school, I discovered the captivating world of science. This fascination ignited my journey towards becoming a bachelor’s in science and engineering. Eventually, I pursued a Ph.D. in the same field, marking significant steps in my academic and professional path.

What supported you in your challenging journey to your PhD?

I feel fortunate to have received a recommendation to pursue my PhD without the burden of exams. Recognizing this as a remarkable opportunity, I eagerly embraced the challenge.

In addition, during the course of my doctoral studies, cupid’s arrow got me as I met my future husband within the same research group. Our mutual support became an anchor in our academic pursuits, leading both of us to successfully attain our PhD diplomas.

Can you tell us a bit about your journey as an application engineer at Nova?

I had knowledge of optical measurement and simulation during my Ph.D. studies, but I had very limited exposure to semiconductors before joining Nova. I didn’t know what the models for each measurement step looked like, so I began learning by downloading the models and libraries that my colleagues had developed. Furthermore, I gained insight into semiconductor fabrication processes through online articles and customer interactions, which greatly contributed to my enhanced comprehension of the models.

What attracted you to work at Nova?

I am a self-disciplined individual, and I wanted to be in a flexible work environment. At Nova, I have the autonomy I desire. I particularly appreciate the flexibility to work from home and have a relatively adaptable schedule.

How would you describe the culture and work environment at Nova?

Nova is a diverse melting pot of talents from around the world. We get to collaborate, chat with our HQ team, and every now and then, we even have those in-person face-to-face meetups during training or workshops. This year, I was fortunate enough to undergo training at HQ, and you know what? The entire HQ team appears to genuinely take pleasure in what they do – it's infectious!

As an application engineer, what are some of the key responsibilities and challenges you face in your role?

As an application engineer, I also get involved in sales on occasion. I get to talk about the latest tools and techniques to our customers. This way I also get to see the business side of my activity which creates a richer work experience.

How does Nova support your professional growth and development?

Whenever I hit a challenge with applications, we're in sync with HQ to troubleshoot. Plus, Nova offers various webinars and platforms like Stream & Metro where I can tap into some handy insights. 

Can you share a personal success story or achievement that you're proud of during your time at Nova?

One accomplishment I'm particularly proud of is my instrumental support for the First MMSR demo at a leading customer, which led to my promotion from an application engineer to a Senior Application Engineer. Over the course of six months, my dedication and effort were recognized not only by my line manager but also by the sales team at our agent NET.

Beyond work, do you have any intriguing hobbies or passions that you enjoy pursuing?

I'm someone who approaches life with boundless energy. While I have a variety of hobbies, they tend to evolve over time and may not always endure for long periods. But one hobby I really like to pursue is sewing.

Have there been any specific role models or mentors who have left an impact on your career journey?

My introduction to Nova happened through a referral program. My colleague, Clark Yang, who had been a part of the Nova team for nearly 3 years introduced me to the company. Interestingly, he was my line manager then, and as circumstances have it, he's moved on to another department while I've assumed his former role. 

What advice would you give to other women aspiring to enter the field of engineering or technology?

It's vital to recognize that engineering and technology are by no means exclusive domains for men. Women have a pivotal role to play, leveraging our innate attentiveness to detail. Our distinct perspectives often lead to the cultivation of exceptional ideas, borne out of the diverse thought processes that men and women bring to the table. So, let's dismiss any notion of being underqualified and embrace our capabilities with confidence.

With a background in material science and a passion for innovation, Dr. Xinrui Lyu's inspiring path unfolds from her days of scientific fascination to becoming a pivotal member of Nova's DMD department. Through challenges, accomplishments, and a profound commitment to her role, her story reflects the thriving spirit of women in engineering and technology, showcasing the profound impact of diversity and ingenuity within the field.

Could you please tell us a bit about yourself, your current position, the duration of your time at Nova, and your academic background?

I have been a part of the Nova team for three years now, serving as a Senior Application Engineer within the DMD department. My journey with Nova began immediately after completing my Ph.D. in material science.

At what age did you realize you were interested in STEM?

When I was in middle school, I discovered the captivating world of science. This fascination ignited my journey towards becoming a bachelor’s in science and engineering. Eventually, I pursued a Ph.D. in the same field, marking significant steps in my academic and professional path.

What supported you in your challenging journey to your PhD?

I feel fortunate to have received a recommendation to pursue my PhD without the burden of exams. Recognizing this as a remarkable opportunity, I eagerly embraced the challenge.

In addition, during the course of my doctoral studies, cupid’s arrow got me as I met my future husband within the same research group. Our mutual support became an anchor in our academic pursuits, leading both of us to successfully attain our PhD diplomas.

Can you tell us a bit about your journey as an application engineer at Nova?

I had knowledge of optical measurement and simulation during my Ph.D. studies, but I had very limited exposure to semiconductors before joining Nova. I didn’t know what the models for each measurement step looked like, so I began learning by downloading the models and libraries that my colleagues had developed. Furthermore, I gained insight into semiconductor fabrication processes through online articles and customer interactions, which greatly contributed to my enhanced comprehension of the models.

What attracted you to work at Nova?

I am a self-disciplined individual, and I wanted to be in a flexible work environment. At Nova, I have the autonomy I desire. I particularly appreciate the flexibility to work from home and have a relatively adaptable schedule.

How would you describe the culture and work environment at Nova?

Nova is a diverse melting pot of talents from around the world. We get to collaborate, chat with our HQ team, and every now and then, we even have those in-person face-to-face meetups during training or workshops. This year, I was fortunate enough to undergo training at HQ, and you know what? The entire HQ team appears to genuinely take pleasure in what they do – it's infectious!

As an application engineer, what are some of the key responsibilities and challenges you face in your role?

As an application engineer, I also get involved in sales on occasion. I get to talk about the latest tools and techniques to our customers. This way I also get to see the business side of my activity which creates a richer work experience.

How does Nova support your professional growth and development?

Whenever I hit a challenge with applications, we're in sync with HQ to troubleshoot. Plus, Nova offers various webinars and platforms like Stream & Metro where I can tap into some handy insights. 

Can you share a personal success story or achievement that you're proud of during your time at Nova?

One accomplishment I'm particularly proud of is my instrumental support for the First MMSR demo at a leading customer, which led to my promotion from an application engineer to a Senior Application Engineer. Over the course of six months, my dedication and effort were recognized not only by my line manager but also by the sales team at our agent NET.

Beyond work, do you have any intriguing hobbies or passions that you enjoy pursuing?

I'm someone who approaches life with boundless energy. While I have a variety of hobbies, they tend to evolve over time and may not always endure for long periods. But one hobby I really like to pursue is sewing.

Have there been any specific role models or mentors who have left an impact on your career journey?

My introduction to Nova happened through a referral program. My colleague, Clark Yang, who had been a part of the Nova team for nearly 3 years introduced me to the company. Interestingly, he was my line manager then, and as circumstances have it, he's moved on to another department while I've assumed his former role. 

What advice would you give to other women aspiring to enter the field of engineering or technology?

It's vital to recognize that engineering and technology are by no means exclusive domains for men. Women have a pivotal role to play, leveraging our innate attentiveness to detail. Our distinct perspectives often lead to the cultivation of exceptional ideas, borne out of the diverse thought processes that men and women bring to the table. So, let's dismiss any notion of being underqualified and embrace our capabilities with confidence.

Amos Lu's 20-year journey at Nova Taiwan started with a nervous interview in which he never thought a journey would begin turning him into a seasoned technical manager. Amos witnessed Nova's familial culture grow and expand, he saw its growth in the semiconductor industry, and even now, 20 years later, he still envisions a bright future for Nova Taiwan's excellence and innovation.

Amos, you've been with Nova Taiwan for an impressive 20 years since the office opened. Can you share with us how your journey at Nova began and what made you choose to stay with the company for such a long time?

Sure. I still remember the day I went to Nova's office for an interview. I was nervous at first since it was my first time interviewing in English with a foreigner. But the interview went well, and I was offered the job.

I've stayed with Nova for so long because I love the company culture. It's like a family here. Everyone is friendly and helpful, and we all work together to achieve common goals. I've also learned a lot during my time at Nova, and I've had the opportunity to travel the world and meet people from different cultures. This is the place where everyone knows each other by name and even the CEO, when he comes to visit knows people's names.

As we celebrate Nova's 30th anniversary, what are some of the most significant changes you've witnessed in your career at Nova over the past two decades?

Nova has grown a lot in the past 20 years. When I first started, we were a small company and here in Taiwan, we were just a few employees. But we've grown steadily, and now we have offices all over the world. We've also developed new technologies that are helping to advance the semiconductor industry.

How has your role as a technical manager evolved during your time at Nova? Are there any specific challenges or milestones that stand out to you?

My role as a technical manager has evolved a lot over the years. When I first started, I was responsible for legacy tools. But as Nova has grown, I've taken on more responsibility. I'm now responsible for a team of field service engineers, who are providing service for both legacy as well as newer and more advanced products.

One of the biggest challenges I've faced is the constant need to learn new things. Nova’s products are constantly evolving to exceed customers' needs, so I need to stay up-to-date on the latest technologies. I've also had to learn how to manage a team of people from different cultures and backgrounds.

But I've also had a lot of milestones in my career. I'm proud to have helped Nova grow into the company it is today. I'm also proud of the work I've done to support our customers and help them achieve their goals. 

How has Nova supported your personal and professional development over the years?

Nova has supported my personal and professional development in many ways. I've had the opportunity to attend training courses, both in-house and at external institutions. I've also been given the opportunity to take on new challenges and responsibilities.

Nova is also a great place to learn from other people. I've learned a lot from my colleagues, both technical and non-technical.

Can you share a memorable experience or project that you've worked on during your tenure at Nova Taiwan?

One of my most memorable experiences was when I was working on a challenging project. The tool wasn’t stable and despite best efforts, it looked as though the only solution was to ship the tool back and replace it with a new one. This is the most expensive solution for the company, and I decided to do my best to find a solution.

I was determined to study the root cause myself, so I disassemble the components to check and placed the parts on a table.
After a thorough examination found the cause and sent the information to headquarters. Once they received my feedback, they figured out that they can fix the error in that single component and send a new one to replace it, thus saving the need to replace the entire tool. I was very happy and proud that I didn’t give up and had a significant contribution to solving this issue. 

As a technical manager, what advice would you give to someone just starting their career at Nova or in the field of semiconductor technology?

My advice to someone just starting their career at Nova is to be passionate about learning. Learn the fundamentals of the tools, the technology, the installation process, and everything that is going on behind the scenes.

Can you share an example of a time when you experienced the true spirit of teamwork at Nova?

Sure. There are many cases like this. For example, one of our FSEs in Tainan urgently needed a part, and the local factory ran out of stock for this part. To solve this as efficiently as possible, our service coordinator found out that that part is available in the warehouse in Hsinchu. The service coordinator sent a request to the logistics department. The logistics assistant personally delivered the part to a bus station, and once the bus arrived at Tainan, the site leader personally collected it and gave it to the FSE in the field. This, to me a perfect example of teamwork and willingness to do what it takes to provide excellent service, despite various challenges.

Throughout your career, what has been your biggest achievement or moment of pride at Nova?

Working with highly demanding customers is my team’s day-to-day challenge. I’m very proud that we received an award of excellence from TSMC, for a project we were all very dedicated to, which allowed us to launch our product on a very tight schedule.

Even our CEO came for a visit and to be part of the award ceremony.

Are there any funny or memorable anecdotes from your time at Nova that you can share with us?

We held a big team meeting with all employees from Asia-Pacific in Thailand including our CEO. The dinner was on a beach, the atmosphere was great and after a few rounds of drinks, we started to throw each other to the sea; managers and CEO included. We felt like a family.

As Nova Taiwan celebrates its 20th anniversary, what do you envision for the future of the office and its contribution to the semiconductor industry?

In the semiconductor arena, Taiwan is a significant player. With numerous major semiconductor manufacturers operating for more than two decades, these facilities have a strong presence. Our Nova Taiwan office strategically collaborates with clients, engaging in close interactions with diverse partners daily. Valuable insights are gained from our customers, providing a deep understanding of their unique needs, process intricacies, and how Nova can effectively contribute to process monitoring.

As technology nodes continue to decrease in size each passing year, the complexity of process challenges intensifies. This prompts customers to measure a higher volume of wafers to gain a comprehensive grasp of process conditions. While this presents growth opportunities for Nova, it also brings forth significant challenges. Can our technology adequately meet the demands of our customers? This question acts as a driving force, urging Nova to consistently enhance our tools and capabilities, enabling us to effectively assist customers in overcoming intricate process issues.

From the start, I've always envisioned a promising future for Nova Taiwan, and I remain steadfast in that belief.

Lastly, what makes Nova Taiwan special to you, and what excites you the most about being part of the Nova family?

Nova Taiwan is special to me because it's like a family. Everyone is friendly and supportive, and we all work together to achieve common goals. I'm excited to be part of the Nova family because I know that I'm surrounded by talented and passionate people. I'm also excited to see what the future holds for Nova Taiwan. I believe that we have the potential to do great things.

 

Meet Marina, a devoted mother of two, who has been an integral part of our QA department for over 5 years. Marina is a true embodiment of humor and optimism, radiating unparalleled creativity and curiosity, and possessing a remarkable capacity for continuous learning. When faced with the diagnosis of Parkinson's, she refused to let it hinder her spirit. As the function on the right side of her body decreased, Marina adapted, becoming left-handed. And if that doesn't already amaze you, just wait until you hear about Marina's awe-inspiring hobbies and her determination to overcome daily struggles.

Could you please share a bit about yourself?

I'm 37 years old, and a proud mother to Matan, who's 12, and Yoni, who's 9. For the past 5 years, I've been an essential member of Nova's team, initially as a software QA specialist and recently, I was promoted to the role of Technical Leader. My focus mainly revolves around testing software on the server side and working with Big Data. I'm quite a technical enthusiast, always eager to explore and scrutinize things, which naturally leads me to immerse myself in learning about our products, not just for professional purposes but also to expand my general knowledge. This passion for learning has allowed me to become well-versed in various aspects of Nova's products, and I'm always ready to lend a helping hand when it comes to testing from a tool's perspective. Additionally, I happily provide guidance and training to our new team members, fostering a collaborative and supportive work environment.

What fuels your high motivation for learning and conducting research, even after five years here at Nova? 

It seems that the activation of both brain lobes plays a significant role – it's not just a coincidence!

What do you mean by this? Could you elaborate, please?

I was born right-handed, but due to the damage caused by Parkinson's disease, my right side was affected. Despite the challenges, I knew I had to adapt and continue living a normal life. So, I taught myself to become left-handed, and now I am almost completely left-handed.

About eight years ago, I went through a very tough period when I had to take care of my ill parents who eventually passed away six months apart. During that time, I was in school, pregnant, and facing numerous challenges. It was an incredibly stressful period. After some time, I started feeling unbalanced while standing, thinking it was an orthopedic issue. Little did I know that these were early signs of Parkinson's, which typically begins long before any noticeable external symptoms appear. The actual diagnosis came at the age of 31, just before starting a new job at Nova, during a very demanding time in my life.

From the time I noticed the weakness and until I received the official diagnosis, about a year and a half had passed. I found out about the diagnosis on my own, by accessing the personal area on the hospital's website, while I was alone at home. Being a somewhat cynical person with a dark sense of humor, I decided to celebrate it as my "diagnosis anniversary" and commemorate six years since the diagnosis this September.

We would like to congratulate you on your strength and resilience

Thank you! Oh, absolutely, go ahead and say it! If I can still laugh in the face of this situation, then I'm already winning against the disease! Every passing year, as I laugh at the disease and celebrate the anniversary, I see it as another victory. This is my attitude.

I chose to keep on living. On one hand, I was diagnosed with a disease more commonly associated with older individuals when I was just 31, and there's no cure for it. But on the other hand, I have two young children at home, and I know I must continue living for them. I'm only at the beginning of my journey. When I first learned about the disease, I could have given in to feelings of helplessness and despair, thinking, "Oh, fate, what am I going to do now?" and crying in the darkness. But that's just not who I am. I am determined to keep moving forward with strength and optimism.

This is incredible!

 You were hired around the same time you were diagnosed, right? How did they react to it at Nova?

Initially, it was irrelevant because the disease wasn't visible, and it didn't affect my work or cause any issues. There was no need to discuss it. At the age of 31, as a young woman, I felt embarrassed about it. I remember thinking, "Am I really going to tell them that I 'vibrate' in my free time?"

As the Parkinson's became more noticeable, I decided to face it head-on. I realized that it is what it is, and we'll deal with it as it comes. If someone asks, I'm honest about it. Honestly, I find people's reactions quite amusing at times. Sometimes, I even playfully emphasize it on purpose and enjoy their surprised expressions. It's become a way to break the ice and show that I can handle life with a sense of humor and positivity.

How do people really react?

It usually begins with a curious look, followed by questions like "What happened?" "Do you need any help?" or "Why are you limping?" The responses are generally very kind and sympathetic. As someone who is cynical, I often reply, "Oh, I have Parkinson's. It seems that many people lack awareness about young individuals being affected by this disease or have limited knowledge and familiarity with Parkinson's in general. The common perception is of an older person or someone severely debilitated, which doesn't match my situation at all.

Did Nova make specific adjustments to help and facilitate your work? Do you even need such adjustments?

Yes, as time went on, I noticed that sitting for extended periods was becoming more challenging. Sometimes I have to stand for about three minutes, and other times it may take up to ten minutes until I feel settled again - and that's just wasted time. So, I asked and was provided with a standing desk, an electric one that resolves this issue. Personally, it is very beneficial for me, and I'm grateful that they accommodated this request, even though nobody here had encountered such a need before.

Can you share and tell us about your hobbies too?

Sure, just let me give you some background first: The Parkinson's damage primarily affects the right side of my body, so the tremor is on the right side, and there is weakness and stiffness both in my leg and hand. As time goes on, or during moments of fatigue or stress, my right hand becomes less functional; it shakes, and typing or using the mouse becomes more difficult. Essentially, every daily action becomes more challenging when my hand is unstable. The solution for me was to start using my other hand. Today, not only is it functional, but I can even make jewelry with it, and I really enjoy doing it!

It's reached the point where my subconscious has become so accustomed to using my left hand that even in the jewelry I prepare, I thread the clasp of the chains to the left. Until someone pointed it out to me, I didn't even notice it; it's likely deeply ingrained in my subconscious now.

Marina Kanibalotski Shaking Art
Marina Kanibalotski Shaking Art

Where did the idea to make jewelry come from?

It all started with a burst of creativity that had been hidden and dormant for many years. I was searching for something to do, and one day I stumbled upon epoxy jewelry on Pinterest. It looked simple enough. Intrigued, I decided to give it a try. To my surprise, people loved my creations, including friends and acquaintances. Encouraged by a good friend, I opened a shop on Etsy and began promoting my work on Facebook, creating flyers, videos, and graphics for self-advertisement, all of which I enjoyed doing.

While my Etsy shop didn't flourish as expected due to limited awareness of the platform in Israel, I started a page on Instagram and relied on word of mouth to spread the word. As I spent more time on the internet, I discovered various gadgets that allowed me to expand beyond just jewelry making. Now, my creative endeavors have evolved to include branding cups, bottles, shirts, textiles of all kinds, signs, and pretty much anything you can imagine – I'm up for the challenge!

Could you also tell us about your Instagram page, Mr.WittyBoard?

Sure! My Instagram page, Mr.WittyBoard, showcases an array of creative message boards.

If you're not familiar with message boards, they are quirky signs displaying humorous and thought-provoking messages. I have one sitting on my desk in the office, and each week I change the sentence to keep things fresh and entertaining. It's amazing how these simple boards can resonate with people! I've built an audience of fans, including fellow Nova colleagues who enjoy the wit and charm of these boards. It's been a delightful experience to connect with others through humor and creativity on my Instagram page.

And you have another page that got a facelift recently, right?

Originally, it was a jewelry page, but since it now showcases a wide range of my creations, I decided to rename it to "Shaking Art." On this page, you can find all the items I make, and each piece can be customized and purchased. As you scroll down, you might notice that the earlier photos are less impressive, but as you go up, the shots become much more captivating. Through this process, I've also honed my photography and editing skills.

Aside from my hobbies and creative ventures, I dedicate a significant amount of time to researching Parkinson's. One notable example is a Facebook group called "Living with Parkinson's," where I actively advise and share my experiences and knowledge. My choice is to continue living with Parkinson's and confront the daily challenges that come with the disease, demonstrating that it is entirely possible to overcome them with resilience and determination!

Igor Turovets has been a dedicated employee at Nova for over 23 years, while also actively volunteering for an NGO that provides emotional and spiritual support to individuals facing challenging life circumstances.

What has been your experience working at Nova for over 23 years?

I've had the opportunity to work on various projects in different roles, beginning as an application specialist and progressing to become an Application Manager and a Senior Scientist on the CTO team. Each role has facilitated the development of new skills and provided me with fresh perspectives on the industry. It has been a continuous journey of learning and personal growth that I have truly

What has been the most fulfilling aspect of your daily life at Nova?

The continuous opportunities for learning and personal growth at Nova have been exceptionally fulfilling. I consistently discover new avenues to contribute to the company's development, whether it involves researching innovative ideas or taking on diverse roles. This ongoing process of exploration keeps me engaged and motivated. Being a part of Nova's development and growth throughout the years has been genuinely rewarding, and I eagerly look forward to what the future holds for the company.

You have a unique volunteering experience; could you share what inspired you to volunteer with an association that provides spiritual support for individuals facing challenging life circumstances?

Offering emotional and spiritual support to individuals navigating difficult life circumstances is a cause that resonates deeply with me. It is a privilege to be able to guide and uplift those who are going through challenging times, and to have the opportunity to make a positive impact in their lives. When the opportunity to work with the association "Shutafim Lamasa" (which translates to "Companions for The Journey" in Hebrew) presented itself, I recognized its potential for a meaningful and fulfilling volunteer experience.

What is the significance of the spiritual guidance you offer and how does it contribute to enhancing the quality of life for those you support?

The spiritual guidance provided by our association volunteers is rooted in the principles of Buddhism, which perceive life as a series of transitions, encompassing even the transition from life to death. This perspective serves to uplift and improve the quality of life for those we assist, including individuals who may not hold beliefs in an afterlife. It helps them to grasp the inherent value of life and discover meaning in the midst of challenging circumstances. This process necessitates patience, understanding, and compassion, and witnessing the positive impact it has on the individuals I support is truly rewarding.

What kind of activities do you engage in with the individuals you guide, and how do you support them in coping with their struggles?

The foremost priority is to be present for the person, providing a compassionate ear and a genuine understanding of their experiences. We engage in open and meaningful conversations about topics that are important to them. Additionally, if needed, we incorporate meditation and mindfulness exercises, utilizing simple and direct methods to enhance the quality of life for those we assist.

Emotional support and guidance are also fundamental aspects of our approach. We strive to help individuals comprehend the nature of their struggles and explore effective coping strategies. This approach demands empathy, understanding, and patience. Witnessing the positive impact it has on the individuals we guide is truly fulfilling and inspiring.

Could you please provide an example of how your guidance has made a meaningful impact on someone's life?

Certainly! I would like to share a fortunate case where the spiritual guidance I offered resulted in a positive outcome. One of the individuals I supported was a cancer patient who, thanks to modern medicine, managed to achieve a complete recovery from the disease. However, she faced the challenge of recovering from the lingering side effects of the illness and reintegrating into a vibrant and functional daily life. It was truly inspiring to witness how my guidance and support assisted her throughout this arduous journey, helping her successfully navigate the difficulties and regain her vitality.

Considering your understanding of the transition between life and death, do you have any advice for embracing a life lived to the fullest?

The true essence of life exists in the present moment, in the here and now. Yesterday is but a memory and tomorrow remains uncertain. One piece of advice I have is to openly express the positive feelings we hold for our loved ones. While we may harbor these emotions deep within our hearts, it is not always evident to them unless we actively convey them. The time to do so is today, without delay.

A poignant example shared by a member of our association comes from a woman whose son passed away at the tender age of 11. She revealed that the last year of his life was so abundant and meaningful that it might have encompassed a more profound life experience than many who live to be 80 years old. This is the ideal we should strive for each day – to infuse our lives with richness and purpose.

By contemplating the inevitability of death in this manner, the present moment takes on an entirely different significance. It serves as a reminder to cherish the time we share with our loved ones and to make the most of every precious moment we have together.

 

 

 

From being the first service personnel to install one of the very first tools to creating Nova's extensive Operations teams. Nova's COO, Gabi Sharon, shares his 27 years journey at Nova.

Can you please share your journey at Nova from the moment you joined the company to your current role as COO?

I joined Nova in September 1995, which is now 27 to 28 years ago. It has been an incredible journey. When I first joined, Nova was a start-up company that was still figuring out the right product to offer. Today, the company has grown significantly and now employs 1,200 people, with over 4,000 active systems installed in the field. I am proud to have seen the company's evolution and growth in technology, people, culture, vision, finances, investor relations, and customer and partner relationships. It is exciting to witness the significant progress and development the company has undergone, especially in recent years.

Rumor has it that you were personally involved in the installation of the first Nova Tool. Can you share some details about that experience?

I was the first person to join Nova and take care of the service field. The company was in the final stages of developing its first product, and I was recruited to build the entire service organization. Just three weeks after joining Nova, I went to support the installation of the first or second system, even though I had limited knowledge of it, and I approached it with awe.

There were two dramatic moments during the installation process. Firstly, the system was very unstable, and I had to spend a week working with the development team over the phone, days and nights, to improve parameters and calibrate the system to get it working. Imagine that the system detected the measurement site with great difficulty, I assume that only 70% of the measurement sites were identified. Today the result is very good, approaching almost 100%.

The second one occurred on the night before I was scheduled to fly back home, the system suddenly stopped working. After hours of troubleshooting, I finally discovered that it was just a blown electric fuse.  The next morning, I stood outside the RadioShack store in the early morning, hoping and praying that they would have the specific fuse I needed to fix the system and once I found it, I rushed back to the customer to install it.

I still remember the sense of relief I felt when the system finally worked after the unstable prototype system caused so much stress. I also recall waiting outside the store, praying that they had the specific fuse I needed to fix the system.

What a great story - What else do you remember about that experience?

A few weeks after the installation I traveled to the same customer with the Measurement Unit (MU) in my hand. For those who are familiar with our system, the MU is the central part of it and it contains all the optics and the XY stage, making it incredibly sensitive. I knew that sending it as a suitcase in the belly of the plane could potentially lead to damage or loss, so I took it with me on the plane. The flight attendant was confused as to why I was bringing a box on board, but I insisted that I wouldn't let it out of my sight. Thanks to my determination, I was eventually allowed to fly with the MU. When I arrived at the customer's location, I installed it and the system worked perfectly.

How has the industry evolved since you joined Nova?

The semiconductor industry and Nova have experienced continuous change with "never a dull moment". The technology has progressed significantly over the years, from 20 and 25 years ago to the present day. We have all felt the impact of digitization in our personal lives. Today, we use more chips than we did five or ten years ago, and these chips are smarter, faster, and consume less energy. For those who love technology and the power it holds, it is an exciting journey to be a part of. Even for those familiar with the manufacturing process (Fab), it is fascinating to witness the technological advancements in silicon placement and chemistry that results in chips capable of performing numerous calculations in mere tenths of a second.

We talked about the industry and technology, now let's delve into Nova's culture. tell me a little about Nova's culture, and how it developed from the time you joined until now?

There are two aspects to the concept of culture: on the one hand, Nova has maintained its sense of community and closeness among its employees - I'm talking about the camaraderie, the bond between colleagues, the openness to voice everything you think and this is something that has not changed significantly over the years - and that's a positive thing. I think that all of us, when we arrive at the workplace, feel very comfortable and at ease with the people around us - these are people who I think share similar cultural values and beliefs with us. And this is what I think strongly aligns the people with the company's goals. Additionally, throughout its history, the company has demonstrated a strong commitment to innovation. It has consistently recognized the importance of fostering a culture of creativity and has allocated appropriate resources to support this goal. As a result, the company has established itself as a leader in its industry and has set the standard for cutting-edge solutions and services. This unwavering focus on innovation has been a key factor in the company's continued success and growth.

On the other hand, I think that a change that is very welcome has happened, it is the more business-oriented perspective that the company has developed. Compared to 20 years ago, Nova was more technology-oriented, and product-focused, with less emphasis on customer needs and business aspects. And today I think that this balance between business and technology is in a very, very good place. We see the growth of the company, especially in recent years, as being very significant due to this combination.    

What advice do you have for someone just starting his or her career?

My advice for someone starting their career would be to constantly look for ways to bring extra value and differentiate themselves in each role they take on. Focus on developing, advancing, and enhancing your skills and extend your areas of responsibility. Seek opportunities to grow and make your position more interesting and impactful for both you and the company.

Can you share a project that you consider a particularly noteworthy accomplishment in your career, whether from recent times or from earlier in your time at the company?

In the recent period, one of the major accomplishments of the operation was delivering all the systems requested by our customers, even in the face of the COVID-19 crisis and even though many of us were working remotely and faced incredible challenges with the supply chain. This proved me that our efforts in building professional processes and interfaces across our operational departments have proven to be successful. Our partnership and supplier management methodology, developed over the years, has effectively ensured smooth operations and a high level of efficiency within our organization. I believe this is a remarkable achievement for all the operational departments within the company.

One early important achievement, which I’m proud of, is establishing the customer service lineup. This was a long-term team effort that involved hiring personnel to serve all our customers, setting up offices in various regions we operate in, and developing a strategic vision for our customer service. Our goal is to always be close to our customers and hire individuals who see the value in providing excellent service and enjoy doing so. I remember that from day one, customers consistently gave positive feedback about our service personnel, thanks to our culture of always being ready to support. Each service engineer has the full support of the company behind them, which enables us to effectively solve any problems that arise. I believe this close relationship with our customers is extremely powerful.

What can you share about the process of setting up the clean rooms, which was one of the biggest challenges of the last period?

The establishment of the new clean rooms in Israel and the USA was a complex task as we had to consider the future development of our products and plan accordingly for the manufacturing facilities. During the room planning process, stringent protocols for cleanliness, temperature stabilization, humidity control, floor vibration mitigation, and acoustic noise reduction were carefully considered. The room layout and logistics areas were meticulously planned with the goal of maximizing efficiency, optimizing utilization of space, and most important providing a safe and ergonomic work environment for our employees. During the planning phase, we had to determine the material and production flow requirements and set high standards to make the room functional and suitable for employees to work in, while incorporating a significant level of automation. A lot of thought and planning went into the construction of the clean room before actual construction began. Now, seeing the clean room near completion, I am proud to see that it meets high standards of the semiconductor industry. While there were challenges in the construction process, these challenges only add to the excitement of the project and make it more fulfilling. At Nova, challenges like these energize us and it's great to see them finally being overcome.

Meet Liora Abramov, the 31-year-old accountant who's all about spreading the word on Nova. From her beginning as a revenue controller, Liora has grown to become a "Financial Storyteller" at Nova, leading a team of women. With her sights set on creating a horizontal platform for unifying perspectives, Liora's second role at Nova is nothing short of exciting and fulfilling.

“Before we begin, allow me to say that when I first walked through the doors at Nova, I knew I had found something special. And let me tell you, my colleagues here are some of the brightest and most talented people I've ever had the pleasure of working with.”

What an opening! That's what's called... an impressive entrance.

  So tell me a little about yourself, Liora.

“My name is Liora Abramov and I'm a 31-year-old accountant. I'm married with two young daughters, and they are counting down the days until they can participate in the next great event Nova puts on for kids. I've been with Nova for three years now, but it feels like a lifetime. I've grown so much both personally and professionally since starting here.

Before Nova, I studied Economics and Accounting at Tel Aviv University, and worked as audit manager at PWC. But at Nova, I've taken on my first role outside of an accounting firm. My goal was always to work for a global company that does good in the world, and that's exactly what I found here. As financiers, our mission is to tell the company's story through our financial reports, and I'm proud to be a part of that.

I started at Nova as a Revenue Controller and EU Controller, but as the company grew, I took on the role of Corporate Controller.”

Tell us more about how did your career evolve at Nova?

With Nova’s growth we realized that better communication and integration between the various global finance teams, is required.

Thanks to Nova’s open-minded approach, I was able to make significant progress , establish new work interfaces with other departments, and this led to an offer to assume a role that hadn't existed before.

Knowing that Nova offers its employees growth opportunities, I jumped at the chance to take on this new role with a cross-organizational and global perspective.

What is your personal experience in your second role at Nova?

The flexibility to take on more responsibilities and expand my knowledge is truly exciting and it's a pleasure to be able to shape my own position. It's a true testament to Nova's commitment to fostering personal and professional growth for their employees.

What allows you to maintain such high motivation and enthusiasm for your work for nearly 3 years?

The people at Nova are what keeps me motivated and enthusiastic about my work. The company's focus on personal and professional development, along with Nova’s management ability to build high motivation in the team, creates a truly dynamic and energizing work environment.

The emphasis on innovation and building for the future at Nova is inspiring and it's exciting to be a part of that. I get to learn new things every day, some of them directly impact my day-to-day work and some are focused on improving personal skills and tools to preform better in my role.

Even my daughters feel like they are part of Nova. They are not just fans of the company - they're practically ambassadors for it. They love the fun events and gifts that Nova provides for families and feel like active participants in the company's culture. When my eldest daughter was asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, she said "I want to work at Nova".

I couldn't be prouder.

The company's summer camp for children is also a huge plus, which allowed me to work with peace of mind knowing my kids are nearby, having a blast with fun activities and making great memories.   

Stunning!