Grad Member Spotlight: Stephanie Gillespie

16 Nov 2015


Stephanie Gillespie

PhD Student, Electrical Engineering, expected graduation May 2017

Georgia Tech

Stephanie started her involvement in SWE as the University of Miami her freshman year as the VP of Outreach. As she became more experienced, she transition to the roles of section president and Region D Collegiate Senator. When she began her PhD program at Georgia Tech, she worked to revitalize the Graduate SWE committee at GT. She is now the Region D conference planning committee chair, Region D assessment committee chair, and the Society Finance Committee Chair. While she has experienced multiple leadership roles, her love for outreach is still strong and she assists with both GT SWE and the Atlanta SWE outreach events every semester. Stephanie was awarded the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship in 2014, the CETL-BP Teaching Assistant Finalist in 2014, and the ECE Faculty award for improving the educational environment with ECE and GT, as chosen by the faculty, in 2015. Congratulations, Stephanie on all that you’ve accomplished! You are an amazing role model!


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

Electrical Engineering PhD at Georgia Tech, hoping to graduate in May 2017 (and do my proposal this spring)!


Give a brief explanation of your research.

My research focuses on detecting depression in patients with a communication disorder. Aphasia is a language disorder than can result post-stroke that can manifest in either speaking jibberish or the inability to speak fluently. This drastic lifestyle change has been linked to higher risks of depression, but the common methods of a psychiastrist examination asking, “How do you feel today?” no longer work when they may not understand the question or be able to respond. Our goal is to analyze aphasic speech through a computer and discover quantitative measures that are linked to depression in aphasic patients.


What do you hope to do with your degree? What are your career goals?

I love teaching, and am hoping to use my PhD to find a faculty position at a teaching-focused institution. I also hope to evolve my research interests into the field of engineering education, specifically focusing our efforts on classroom techniques and program-level changes for student retention.


What are some of your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?

I am training for my first (and only) half-marathon, which I will run Thanksgiving morning! I also recently completed my first triathlon in August and am thinking that it will be my new sport of choice. I love to bake, cook homemade meals, and play board games with friends.


What’s a fun fact about you?

My two cats are named Tesla and Archimedes.


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