Grad Member Spotlight: Heather Wiest

wiest_heatherHeather Wiest

PhD,  Aerospace Engineering

Purdue University

Heather has been a member of SWE since 2007. During her senior year at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology, she was treasurer for her SWE section. Once she started graduate school at Purdue in 2011, she became a member of the Leadership Coaching Committee (LCC). In 2012, she was selected to be Team Lead for the Region H LCC coaches and remained in that position until she became the FY17 LCC Chair-Elect. As a professional member, she was involved in the chartering process for the Greater Lafayette Indiana (GLI) SWE section, which celebrated its one year anniversary as an official SWE section this January! Additionally,she is a member of the FY17 Governance Taskforce.

Heather received three fellowships in graduate school: Purdue Doctoral Fellowship (2011), National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship (2012), and Zonta International Amelia Earhart Fellowship (2016). Locally, she was awarded a Purdue University’s College of Engineering Outstanding Graduate Student Service Award for her involvement as treasurer in three graduate student organizations. Congratulations, Heather, on all you’ve accomplished! Keep up the great work!

What is your degree program (MS/PhD, department)? When do you expect to graduate?

I successfully defended my PhD dissertation in December! I received my Masters from Purdue in August 2013. Both graduate degrees are in Aerospace Engineering.

Give a brief explanation of your research.
My area of study within Aerospace Engineering is Propulsion. My research focuses on experimental gas turbine combustion and fuel sprays. For my PhD, I studied a liquid jet in crossflow with increasingly elevated fuel temperatures. The liquid jet in crossflow is a method of fuel injection found in gas turbine combustors, turbojet afterburners, scramjet/ramjet engines, and rotating detonation engines, and higher temperature fuels can occur in advanced aircraft that use fuel as a heat sink for thermal management purposes. By studying this flow field with high speed imaging, variations in the breakup of the liquid jet due to increasing fuel temperatures can be analyzed.

What do you hope to do with your degree? What are your career goals?
I’m heading off to Cape Canaveral, FL to work for Blue Origin as a Test Facilities Design Engineer. Basically, I’m a plumber for rockets. I will help to design the fluid systems used in testing their engines and launching their rockets. Blue Origin is a private spaceflight company owned by Amazon founder Jeff Bezos with the goal of creating greater human access to space at lower costs and with increased reliability.

What are some of your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
I love playing random sports. I’m not sure what I’m going to do when I’m not at a university playing intramurals like wallyball, inner tube water polo, or dodgeball! I also really like board games. My current favorite is 7 Wonders.

What’s a fun fact about you?

I really enjoy visiting national parks! I have a National Park Passport where I collect cancellation stamps that serve as a record of all the parks I’ve visited. I currently have about 60 stamps, and I hope that finally being done with school will give me the opportunity to visit more national parks!

Upcoming Local Conferences

The season of region and local conferences is fast approaching. Are you excited yet? I am! I’ve compiled a list of the upcoming conferences. I hope you are all registered and excited to attend.

Send us your pictures from region conference so we can share them on our instagram. Share using #SWEGrad.

February 9-12

  • Region B conference at Hilton Irvine/Orange County Airport: website

February 17-19

  • Region C conference in College Station, TX: website
  • WE Local Pittsburgh at Omni William Penn Hotel, including Region G: website

February 24-26

  • WE Local San Jose at San Jose Marriott, including Regions A & J: website
  • Region E conference in Syracuse, NY: website
  • Region F conference in Storrs, CT: website (02/25-26 only)
  • Region i conference in St. Louis, MO: website

March 9-11 & March 10-12

  • Region D conference in Atlanta, GA: website (03/9-11)
  • Region H conference in Ann Arbor, MI: website (03/10-12)

March 22-24

  • WE Local Pune at Hyatt Regency: website

May 17-19

  • WE Local Amsterdam at Mövenpick Hotel Amsterdam City Centre: website

In 2018, the entire society is transitioning to WE Local style conferences. The locations have been announced here with the dates still to be determined. To learn more, review the WE Local Overview Guide.

Be a Part of WE17! Call for Proposals is Open!

We are pleased to announce our WE17 grad programming kickoff meeting!

You are invite to join. Yes you!

The call for proposals for WE17 is open. If you enjoyed participating in the Graduate Community sessions at WE16 or have ideas on how to improve the grad sessions for WE17, we invite you to dial in to our community-wide teleconference! The call is to brainstorm and plan ideas for grad-focused sessions at WE17. You could be part of leading a session! The call will be hosted by Emily Hoffman (Graduate Programming Coordinator) and Jodi Boutté (Graduate Programming Coordinator-Elect).

Date: Wednesday, February 15

Time: 9:00 pm Eastern (8:00 pm Central, 7:00 Mountain, 6:00 Pacific)

Phone Number: 712-451-0011
Access Code: 409-810

Agenda: GoogleDoc

Proposals are due on Friday, March 10. Submit proposals here. For a list of currently proposed topics or for any questions, email Emily at emilyhoffman18 [at] gmail [dot] com.

Grad Member Spotlight: Lisa Cervia

lisa_cervia

Lisa Cervia

PhD student, Biomedical Engineering

Duke University

Lisa first joined SWE as a freshman biomedical engineering major at Boston University. She is now a biomedical engineering PhD candidate at Duke University. Throughout the past 8 years, she has participated in many SWE outreach events and mentoring programs. She is now taking on more leadership roles in SWE and is working to help with the graduate mentoring program and graduate SWE planning for WE 17.

Lisa has received many awards for her research in biomedical engineering. As a graduate student, she received the BMES Innovation and Career Development award as well as Duke University’s Pharmacological Sciences Training Program award. She has also received numerous scholarships and research awards as an undergraduate student. Congratulations, Lisa, on all you’ve accomplished! Keep up the great work!

What is your degree program (MS/PhD, department)? When do you expect to graduate?

I am in the PhD program in Biomedical Engineering at Duke University. I expect to graduate within the next year and will be looking for postdoc positions.

Give a brief explanation of your research.
Currently, I design solutions to improve methods of gene delivery. Gene therapy has great potential to transform the treatment of many diseases, but there is a great need for more efficient and safe methods of gene delivery. I work at both uncovering the mechanisms by which non-viral methods of gene delivery introduce DNA to the cell and utilizing these mechanisms to develop strategies that improve efficiency, such that these methods of delivery can be more widely implemented for clinical applications.

What do you hope to do with your degree? What are your career goals?
I aspire to contribute to the growing field of Biomedical Engineering as a professor at a major research university. My ultimate goal is not only to become a tenured professor, but to help to nurture and mold this field into one that is inclusive and reaches out to other disciplines for collaboration. I want to serve as a role model, educating young students about what biomedical engineering entails, showing them that they have the potential to contribute to such a field, and to set aside many of the stereotypes surrounding engineering.

What are some of your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
I have danced ballet for 23 years.

What’s a fun fact about you?
I am the founder and president of the Biomedical Engineering Society Graduate Section at Duke University. This year, we hosted the first annual on-campus Duke BMES conference. The conference included a total of fourteen talks by esteemed BME Professors, a lunchtime poster session that included presentations by postdocs, graduate students and undergraduate students as well as a plenary session and reception with invited speaker. See picture of event below.
cervia_bmes

Work-Life Balance Webinar NEXT WEEK

Hello SWE! Check out our upcoming webinar on Monday!

The Great Balancing Act: Reviewing Goals and Achieving Work Life Balance on Jan 23 at 7PM EST
This workshop on Work Life Balance is meant to help analyze how you currently distribute your time and determine if you use it effectively to work toward your main goals. We want to enable you to identify the imbalances in your life, and learn some techniques to reorganize and maximize your time to achieve your goals. The session will begin by having the participants write down their 3 main goals such as family, career, fitness, travel etc. Then we will ask them to quickly map out their current time expenditures to determine if where they spend their time truly matches their goals. The session will then discuss some tactics for building a more balanced life and ways to help achieve goals. The tactics that will be covered are: 1) Set specific goals with reminders to stay focused. 2) Organize your work and personal life in one place: plan ahead, keep important notes in a visible place.  3) Build in downtime and personal time. 4) Learn how to say no and establish boundaries for yourself: Most women in SWE tend to be the “Superwoman” type and even we need to be able to say no. 5) Communication is key: be upfront with your boss on your needs. 6) Don’t overwork and overstress yourself, sometimes the overtime isn’t worth it.

 

Data Science Fellowship/Incubator

The Data Incubator is an intensive 8 week fellowship that prepares masters students, PhDs, and postdocs in STEM and social science fields seeking industry careers as data scientists. The program is free for Fellows and supported by sponsorships from hundreds of employers across multiple industries. In response to the overwhelming interest in our earlier sessions, we will be holding another fellowship.

Who Should Apply: Anyone who has already obtained a masters or PhD degree or who is within one year of graduating with a masters or PhD is welcome to apply. Applications from international students are welcome. Everyone else is encouraged to sign-up for a future session.

Locations: In addition to the below in-person locations, we will have a remote online session:

  • New York City
  • San Francisco Bay Area
  • Seattle
  • Boston
  • Washington, DC.

Dates: All sections will be from 2017-03-27 to 2017-05-19.

Application Link: https://www.thedataincubator.com/fellowship.html#apply?ref=wcmVzaG5pY0BzdGFuZm9yZC5lZHU=

Data Science in 30 minutes: Learn how to build a data-science project in our upcoming free Data Science in 30-minutes webcast. Signup soon as space is limited.

 

FUNDING OPPORTUNITY -GAANN PhD Program

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CU-Denver has received funding to support several PhD students for the upcoming fall semester.

The SHRC Program is a U.S. Department of Education-sponsored GAANN (Graduate Assistance in Areas of National Need) PhD fellowship program, focusing on interdisciplinary training of fellows in the area of Transportation Engineering for Safe, Healthy and Resilient Communities.

The three-year fellowship will cover:

  • Tuition
  • Fees
  • Conference Travel
  • Annual Stipend

Find out more at http://www.gaann.org/