Hello world! Welcome to my website!
👋 I’m an orthopaedic biomechanist interested in using biomechanics, robotics, and data science in orthopaedics to inform surgical treatment methods and improve clinical outcomes.
I’m currently a graduate research assistant in the Lenz Research Group of the Orthopaedic Research Laboratory at the University of Utah School of Medicine pursuing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering focused on foot and ankle orthopaedic biomechanics. My dissertation work aims to apply robotics, machine learning, and model predictive control to characterize the individual joint mechanics of the foot and ankle in a cadaveric model for improving our understanding of how they adapt, compensate, and interact with each other with injury, surgical intervention, abnormality, or implant design.
My overall career goal is to leverage engineering and data science to solve real-world problems and make positive impacts in society, especially in disadvantaged communities. Areas of interest include robotics, health technology, sustainable development, and climate technology.
I grew up in Spartanburg, SC and completed my BS in Chemistry with a minor in Applied Mathematics at Wofford College in 2015. After graduation, I interned as a research chemist at the E. & J. Gallo Winery Research Laboratory in Modesto, CA. Eventually, my coupled interests in medicine and engineering evolved and moved to Corvallis, OR to complete my MS in Bioengineering with a minor in Robotics at Oregon State University, where I worked on the development of a novel implantable passive differential mechanism for ECRL-to-FDP tendon transfer surgery with Ravi Balasubramanian and Jim Sweeney. In 2020, I was awarded an Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education (ORISE) Research Fellowship to conduct research in the Orthopaedic Biomechanics Laboratory at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, MD. As a research fellow, I worked with clinicians to design experiments for characterizing the biomechanical properties of various joints, including the elbow, knee, spine, and ankle, in intact, injured, and repaired cadaveric models to inform surgical treatment strategies. When I’m not in the lab, I enjoy mountain biking, rock climbing, and skiing with my dog and friends.
PhD in Biomedical Engineering | University of Utah | 2025 (expected)
Graduate Certificate in Data Science | University of Utah | 2025 (expected)
MS in Bioengineering, Minor in Robotics | Oregon State University | 2020
BS in Chemistry, Minor in Mathematics | Wofford College | 2015
Utah Orthopaedic Research Laboratory | Graduate Research Assistant | Jan 2022–Present
Utah Orthopaedic Research Laboratory | Research Analyst | Oct–Dec 2021
Walter Reed National Military Medical Center | ORISE Resarch Fellow | Mar 2020–Sept 2021
Robotic & Human Control Systems Laboratory | Graduate Research Assistant | Sept 2016–Feb 2020
E. & J. Gallo Winery Research Laboratory | Chemistry Research Intern | Jun–Nov 2015
Finite Element Model of Biphasic Contact in the Tibiotalar Joint: Developed finite element models that represent the tibiotalar joint with different articular morphologies to investigate the biphasic-on-biphasic contact in healthy and progressively osteoarthritic conditions (FeBio; Models)
Monte Carlo Simulation of the Monte Hall Problem: Implemented Monte Carlo simulation in a game show given choice of three doors, a car behind one and goats behind others (Julia; Code)
Stability Analysis of a Nonlinear Model Predictive Controller for Functional Electrical Stimulation: Examined NMPC stability using Lyapunov Theory; tuned PID controller for leg extension in musculoskeletal model (MATLAB; Code)
Implementation and Examination of a Mathematical Model for Predicting Muscle Force and Fatigue: Utilized MATLAB Ode45 to model isometric muscle force; performed sensitivity analysis on physiological parameters in force and fatigue prediction (MATLAB; Code)
Implementation of Convolutions Neural Networks for Iceberg Classification in Satellite Radar Data: Built CNN to identify if a remotely sensed object was a ship or iceberg in Kaggle competition (Python; Code)
Semi-Autonomous Mobile Robot for Jenga Gameplay: Constructed mobile robot with 5 DOF manipulator – 3D printed parts, DC motors, LIDAR, IMUs, Raspberry Pi, and microcontrollers; derived inverse kinematics for block picking; STOMP algorithm (Python, C++; Code)
Trajectory Optimization of Human Arm Reaching Model in OpenSim: Executed iLQR algorithm for object reaching task in biomechanical human arm model moving in sagittal plane (MATLAB; Code)
Safe Feedback Motion Planning with Unknown Dynamics for Car Model in MATLAB: Expanded stochastic trajectory optimization with LQR feedback control algorithm for mobile robot motion planning (MATLAB; Code)
Honors & Awards 🏅
David Winter Young Investigator Award (Finalist) | International Society of Biomechanics | May 2023
Best Doctoral Poster Presentation Award | Rocky Mountain American Society of Biomechanics | Apr 2023
Arthroscopy Journal Award for Basic Science Research Excellence (Runner-Up) | Arthroscopy: The Journal of Arthroscopic and Related Surgery | Jan 2022
Dean’s Distinguished Graduate Fellowship (Declined) | University of California, Davis | Apr 2021
Musculoskeletal Tissue Biomechanist Research Fellowship | Oak Ridge Institute for Science and Education | Jan 2020
Science Communication Fellowship (Declined) | Oregon Museum of Science and Industry | Nov 2018
Blue Ribbon Poster Award | Orthopaedic Research Society | Aug 2017
Service & Leadership 🤓
American Society of Biomechanics - Utah Student Chapter | Vice President/Treasurer | Aug 2022–Present
Utah BME Graduate Student Advisory Committee | Co-Teasurer | Aug 2021–Present
Utah Graduate Women in Biomedical Engineering | Member | Jan 2022–Present
OSU CBEE Graduate Student Association | Bioengineering Chairman | 2017–2018
OSU Robotics Graduate Student Association | Co-Founder & Co-President | 2016–2018
Volunteering Experinces 🌱
Wasatch Adaptive Sports | Salt Lake City, UT | 2021–Present
WeDo Lego Robotics | OSU STEM Academy | 2016–2019
Makers Club | Corvallis-Benton County Public Library | 2016