I am currently a Mechanical Engineering PhD student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, working with the Precision Engineering Research Group under the advisement of Dr. Alex Slocum.
Previously, I completed my Master of Science degree for Mechanical Engineering at the University of Nebraska. My master’s work contributed to four refereed journal publications, six refereed conference publications, four medical conference publications, two conference posters, and technology that is currently being disclosed for patent review. Under the guidance of my graduate advisor, Dr. Shane Farritor, I worked as a leading member of an interdisciplinary group developing miniature in vivo robots for surgical applications.
During my time with this group I contributed to the design and fabrication of three generations of surgical robots. The nature of this work required considerable collaboration across many disciplines, most notably with medical professionals, in all stages of the work from conception and design to animal model testing. My involvement in this research has provided me the necessary background and ambition to contribute significantly in the field of surgical robotics.
My developing skills as a mechanical engineer were greatly strengthened during summer internships at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Honeybee Robotics and Spacecraft Mechanism, and NUtech Ventures. While at JPL and Honeybee, I was exposed to several flight and research projects that improved my understanding of the design of robots in both the laboratory and real world.
As a member of the Mobility and Robotic Systems team at JPL, I worked on the design of a rover-based sampling system for open-pit mining operations. While at Honeybee, I designed and assembled a custom rover capable of deploying a sample coring and caching system. This rover was used in testing to demonstrate feasibility for NASA’s Mars Sample Return (MSR) mission. During my time at NUtech, I developed a new technique to evaluate the licensing potential of emerging technologies.
Aside from my academic pursuits, I was also a member of the University of Nebraska Football team from 2004-2008. During this time I worked my way up from a walk-on scout team player to a starting linebacker with a scholarship. While playing, I was awarded several student-athlete awards including 2nd team ESPN-The-Magazine Academic-All American and two-time 1st team Academic All Big 12 awards.
Through my experiences as a student-athlete, I acquired a multitude of skills that are transferable to any activity I choose to pursue in the future. I was able to become extremely team-oriented, accountable, and developed myself into a vocal leader with the ability to perform under pressure.
Recently, my professional interests have expanded from mechanical design to engineering entrepreneurship and innovation. The ability to merge engineering with business is an art that I am continually striving to be successful at. My long-term goal is to be involved with the formation of a start-up company from idea conception to success.
I was born and raised in Grand Island, Nebraska. During my spare time I enjoy: hunting, fishing, recreational sports, movies, and learning anything and everything I can.