Mark Zediker's a-ha Illinois moment happened when he was a junior undergrad studying physics.
“I was working at the Loomis Laboratory to help pay my way through school by repairing equipment and setting up the laboratory experiments for the undergrad students. The first time I ever saw a laser was while setting up a holography laboratory. It was a HeNe Lasers built by Spectra Physics packaged in a simple white enclosure. I was absolutely amazed at the purity of the red beam emanating from the output aperture.
“It was at that precise moment that I decided that I wanted to study lasers and I set off to learn everything I could while at Illinois."
Wise choice — 40-plus years and three startup companies later, "I am still as enthusiastic today about laser technology as I was then," says the Denver-based CEO of laser technology company NUBURU.