Grad Member Spotlight: Caity Clark

caityCaity Clark
PhD, Mechanical Engineering
Oregon State University
As a member of the SWE since 2010, Caity has been engaged with SWE at the undergraduate, graduate, and professional level through the Oregon State University, Willamette Valley, and Columbia River sections. She enjoys bridging the undergraduate, graduate, and professional groups through event participation, service activities, mentorship, and social activities. In 2016, she also presented at the regional ABJ conference in Seattle with fellow SWE member, Aisha McKee.
In the past year, Caity has received four research awards. First, she was recently awarded a Fulbright fellowship to conduct research in Denmark next year on risk and reliability in offshore renewable energy systems. Currently, she is sponsored by Iberdrola as a Research Fellow at OSU and is a NSF National Research Traineeship Fellow through OSU’s Risk and Uncertainty in Marine Sciences program. Lastly, she is an OMSI Science Communication Fellow with the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, through which she has created a mini-exhibit and participates regularly in presenting her exhibit at public outreach events. Through OMSI, she also participates in the Designing Our World program, which focuses on engaging young girls in engineering throughout Oregon. Congratulations, Caity, 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 a second-year graduate student, pursuing a PhD in Mechanical Engineering. I focus on challenges at the nexus of offshore renewable energy, computational optimization, and machine learning. I will be receiving my MSc this summer before traveling to Denmark for a year. Previously, I have worked at Anchor QEA in Portland, and received my Honors BSc from Oregon State in Ecological Engineering in 2014.

Give a brief explanation of your research.
I currently work on a few projects. My MSc thesis involves computational optimization techniques applied to co-located wind-wave energy systems, and my NSF side-project applies machine learning techniques to coastal community resilience and emergency renewable energy generation. Next year, I will be studying risk and reliability propagation in offshore renewable energy systems.

What do you want to do with your degree? What are your career goals?
I want to conduct research for the rest of my life in renewable energy systems. I am unsure yet if that research position will be in a researching university, national laboratory, or industry.  Research gives me the outlet to express my creativity and ambition, and a career which allows me to do that every day would be nothing short of a dream come true.

What are some of your hobbies? What do you do in your free time?
In my free time, you can usually find me out on a run (I have run three full marathons and a handful of half-marathons), or in my garden. I also like to get out on the weekends to hike, bike, raft…any activity in which I can play outdoors and get my blood pumping.

What’s a fun fact about you?
I have Type 1 Diabetes.
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