2021-22 COE Graduate Fellowship Recipients

Samuel Adams

I am a first-year Ph.D. student in biomedical engineering and received a BS in biomedical engineering from the University of Utah in 2021. I am a member of the Focused Ultrasound Laboratory—part of the Utah Center for Advanced Imaging Research—and am interested in developing minimally invasive interventions and image guided medical therapies. My background in programming and electronics is well-suited to supporting innovation at this intersection of the computational aspects of medical imaging and the science and engineering aspects of medical instrumentation. During my undergraduate studies, I assisted with the ongoing clinical translation of a noninvasive breast cancer treatment platform by further developing phase aberration correction technology and investigating its potential clinical impact on focused ultrasound treatments for breast cancer. Throughout my graduate studies and career, I intend to use my education and resources to develop and advance less invasive treatments for patients with serious conditions.

Noelle Brown

Noelle Brown is a Colorado-raised data scientist and educator pursuing a PhD in Computing with research interests in bias and fairness in machine learning, data science education, and machine learning ethics. Noelle has her MS in Data Science from Southern Methodist University and BS in Mathematics from Colorado State University and has experience working as both a mathematics and data science instructor. She is particularly interested in researching ways to improve data science education and researching the use of machine learning to improve human centered fields, with a special emphasis on education.

Henry Crandall

Henry graduated summa cum laude from the University of Utah with a BS in electrical engineering and a minor in Russian. He is excited to continue his education at the U studying bioimpedance. Henry is a Salt Lake City native who loves all winter/water sports and is a diehard Utah Jazz fan.

Elie Diaz

Elie is a Venezuelan-born immigrant that recently finished his Master of Computer Science at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, GA. During his time at Tech, he spent several years teaching Computer Graphics and doing research with faculty, focusing on physics-based simulations of fluid mechanics, phase transitions, and acoustic phenomena. He received the GT College of Computing’s “Outstanding Undergraduate Teaching Assistant” award during his final year as a Computer Graphics Teaching Assistant, and he is looking forward to continuing to teach and learn from students of all backgrounds. Elie is also an experienced choral musician, serving as a student director for several ensembles of various styles and as an audio engineer for virtual music projects over the past year. He is excited to start on this journey towards a PhD in Computer Science and to continue to work in the field of Computer Graphics!

Hannah Duffy

Hannah Duffy is a first year PhD student in the BioInnovate program working on the development of an antimicrobial test system for medical devices. She plans to use her degree to jump into medical device research and development, but eventually would like to build a project-based engineering curriculum for kids. Outside of academia, she loves hiking, skiing, and trail running. Hannah has a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from BYU, where she focused her research on microfluidic devices and cell-free-protein synthesis. She’s a health food nut and is always trying and creating new recipes, some of which are posted on her food blog @chewsgood!

Alex Farley

Alex is a first year Ph.D. student in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department. Alex completed his undergraduate degree in Biomedical Engineering with a minor Environmental & Sustainability Studies at the University of Utah in May 2021. In his time at the University of Utah, he has been a member of the student government and held the position of Sustainability Director in his final year. Alex also worked as an undergraduate research assistant studying human brain organoids throughout his undergraduate career. In his free time, you can find Alex trail running in the foothills of Salt Lake City or working with local community organizations to ensure a more sustainable and just future. Alex is thrilled to continue his academic career in pursuing a Ph.D. with a focus of power systems engineering at the University of Utah. He plans to explore grid transitions and integration of renewable energies.

Sam Faulstich

Sam Faulstich (they/them) is very excited to join the chemical engineering department at University of Utah. They recently completed their master’s degree in atmospheric science at University of Nevada, Reno. Their research focuses on modeling
particle transport through the atmosphere to estimate human exposure to wildfire smoke.

Luke Hudson

Luke is a first-year biomedical engineering PhD student in Dr. Weiss’ Musculoskeletal Research Laboratory, and will focus his research on the underlying pathophysiology and biomechanics of femoroacetabular impingement syndrome (FAIS). Prior to attending the UoU, Luke attended the University of Oklahoma where he graduated with a BS/MS in Mechanical Engineering. His graduate research at the OU focused on the microstructural and mechanical characterizations of heart valve leaflets in order to develop high fidelity computational models. He was raised in Houston, Texas and enjoys hiking, skiing, and OU football.

Rachel Klink

I am excited to pursue a PhD in Biomedical Engineering beginning Fall 2021. My research experience includes an internship at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive Kidney Diseases studying gestational diabetes and an internship at the University of Delaware studying rotator cuff tears in a rat model. My research at Utah will capitalize on my mechanical training by focusing on tissue biomechanics. While earning a BS in engineering from Taylor University, I participated and led in the Middle East Collegiate Association, studied abroad, and played horn in the symphony orchestra. I am from Phoenix, Arizona, and I can’t wait to explore all things outdoors that Utah has to offer.

Michal Lieberman

Michal is a first-year graduate student in Environmental and Water Resources Engineering. After completing her bachelors in Soil Science & Hydrology she went to work as a lab technician for a water and sewer utility, first in New York State and then California. Enthralled with the challenges and opportunities involved in managing human waste and supplying clean water, she transitioned into an engineering internship. This year Michal will be joining Dr. Emily Marron’s lab, where she hopes to help illuminate some of the potential capabilities and dangers of potable reuse systems.

Tian Morrison

Before pursuing a PhD in Biomedical Engineering at the University of Utah, I graduated from the University of Maine (UMaine) with a B.S. in Biomedical Engineering and minors in Math and Bioinstrumentation. During my four years at UMaine, I participated in research on campus in the areas of biomaterials/imaging and human-autonomous system interactions, as well as internships in Clinical Engineering at a local hospital and Pharmaceutical Sciences at Merck. These experiences, along with my classes, precipitated an interest in drug delivery and biomaterials research, which I plan to continue exploring. In my free time, I enjoy getting outside, reading, and painting.

Caleb Ramette

In pursuing an undergraduate degree in Chemistry at Hillsdale College, I have explored many areas of interest. I am seeking a graduate degree in Materials Science and Engineering because this interdisciplinary field integrates unique approaches to create new and unique solutions. Past research experience includes astrophysics, physical chemistry, inorganic synthesis, and computational chemistry projects. Outside of the laboratory, I have been involved in several diverse clubs and organizations, including Sigma Pi Sigma, Kappa Mu Epsilon, ACS, Tae Park Anderson Institute Tae Kwon Do, and leadership positions in Sigma Zeta, the Hillsdale College Symphony Orchestra, Society of Physics Students, and chemistry and physics teaching assistantships. In addition, I co-hosted the IBS national award-winning Best Comedy Show “The Loft” on WRFH/Radio Free Hillsdale 101.7 FM for three seasons, and received the 2020-2021 ACS Undergraduate Award in Physical Chemistry and 2020-2021 Senior Marsden Award for Outstanding Research at Hillsdale College.

Nathan Stringham

Nathan Stringham grew up in Salt Lake City before attending Pomona College in Claremont, California where he earned a BA in Mathematics. As an undergraduate his research focused on natural language processing for low-resource languages. Outside of the classroom he competed and served as a team captain for the Pomona-Pitzer Cross Country and Track and Field teams. He is excited to start the PhD program in Computer Science at the U this fall and is extremely grateful for the support of the Robison Fellowship. In his free time you can find him in the mountains.

Sam Westgard

Sam received a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Clarkson University and graduated with great
distinction. He is interested in the design and control of wearable robotic devices and will be responsible
for developing a novel robotic knee and ankle prosthesis in the University of Utah’s Bionic Engineering
Lab under Dr. Tomasso Lenzi. Previously, Sam worked as an R&D co-op engineer and as an engineering
intern for Parker Hannifin’s Human Motion and Control business unit. At Parker, he was responsible for
the R&D of wearable robotic devices and gained valuable industry experience and exposure to devices
such as the Indego Exoskeleton, a powered exoskeleton used for stroke and spinal cord injury
rehabilitation. Sam also developed various cycle testing fixtures that replicate human gait and has a
pending patent for a fixture that he co-invented. In his free time, Sam enjoys biking, rock climbing, and
exploring the outdoors.

Matthew Williams

Matthew R.T. Williams is a proud Hoosier, entrepreneur, and passionate problem solver. Originally from
South Bend, Indiana, R.T. came to the University of Utah as an undergraduate student for all the opportunities it presented. In his undergraduate career, R.T. started multiple organizations, was one of the first graduates to complete the Engineering Entrepreneurship Certificate and was the first student at the University of Utah to complete the National Academy of Engineering’s Grand Challenge Scholars Program. Outside the classroom, R.T. has worked with consulting firms in the energy, intellectual property, and food processing industries. R.T. is excited about pursuing a doctorate as he seeks to expand his knowledge and add value to the energy and consulting industry. The University of Utah was the perfect match for R.T. to continue his education, and the ARCS Fellowship will only enhance R.T.’s abilities to accomplish his goals.