Biomechanics Research Symposium

Biomechanics Research Symposium

Students show how their studies could make people healthier

A University of Delaware graduate student develops pressure-detecting sensors that could help injured patients recover. Another student analyzes brain scans to understand balance in children with cerebral palsy.

These are just two examples of the many students in multiple colleges and departments at the University of Delaware who conduct research with the potential to improve human health. At the University’s 16th annual Biomechanics Research Symposium, held on April 17, 2019 at the STAR Campus, 42 of these stellar students showed off their work.

The Biomechanics Research Symposium was presented by the Center for Biomechanical Engineering Research (CBER), an interdisciplinary research center that develops engineering science and clinical technology to reduce the human impact of diseases such as osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, degenerated discs, and cystic fibrosis.

“Attendees, including the faculty and keynote speaker, were all impressed by the high quality of the student research and presentations,” said X. Lucas Lu, an associate professor of mechanical engineering and chair of the organizing committee for the symposium. “Our students are doing interesting clinical research with a high impact on human health, and they presented their findings well.”

hall of student's research posters

Students show off their research at UD’s Science, Technology and Advanced Research (STAR) Campus.

The symposium’s keynote speaker was Jennifer Stevens-Lapsley, MPT, PhD, a professor and director of the Rehabilitation Science PhD Program in the Physical Therapy Program at the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Center.

Stevens-Lapsley is focused on identifying, integrating and advancing innovative evidence-based medicine solutions for older adult rehabilitation through highly effective research methods and partnerships. She has almost 20 years of clinical research experience in patients with osteoarthritis planning joint arthroplasty, and more recently, medically complex patient populations. Her research ranges from understanding the mechanisms of skeletal muscle dysfunction to studies of implementation of best rehabilitation practices in post-acute care settings.

Stevens-Lapsley earned her physical therapy degree and doctoral degree in biomechanics and movement science with a focus in applied physiology at the University of Delaware. She then completed post-doctoral training at the University of Florida.

student with research poster

Ashwini Sansare, a graduate student in biomechanics and movement science, explains her research.

The following student poster presentations and podium presentations earned awards.

Top Podium Presentation Awards:

Sagar Doshi, a doctoral student in mechanical engineering, for “Carbon Nanomaterial-Based Novel Functional Garments for Human Motion Analysis.”

Grace McIlvain, a doctoral student in biomedical engineering, for “Brain Mechanical Properties and Balance Reactions in Children with Cerebral Palsy.”

Kaleb Burch, a doctoral student in mechanical engineering, for “Novel Fabric-Based Force Sensors for Continuous Overground Gait Analysis.”

Rebecca Clements, an undergraduate student in biomedical engineering, for “Correlations Between Mechanical Properties of the Adolescent Brain and Risk-Taking Behaviors.”

Top Poster Presentation Awards:

Dana Matthews, a doctoral student in biomechanics and movement science, for “Sedentary Time Relates to Worsening Knee Cartilage Damage Over Two Years: The MOST Study.”

Hiral Master, a doctoral student in biomechanics and movement science, for “Does Walking at Higher Intensities Increase Or Decrease the Risk of Total Knee Arthroplasty?”

People’s Choice Poster Presentation Award:

Nicole Ray, a doctoral student in mechanical engineering, for “Combined Effects of User-Driven Treadmill Control and Functional Electrical Stimulation for Poststroke Rehabilitation.”

student with poster

Naoaki Ito, a graduate student in biomechanics and movement science, explains his research.

Oct. 24: VIP Student Info Session

Oct. 24: VIP Student Info Session

Students from every major are invited to attend an information session Wednesday, October 24, to learn more about the University of Delaware’s Vertically Integrated Projects program, which links undergraduate students to the cutting-edge research of faculty mentors.

The session, which includes pizza, goes from 5 to 7 p.m. in the iSuite Collaboration Hub (132 Evans Hall).

The VIP program is designed to build long-lasting, multi-disciplinary teams of students to work on projects centered around the work of current faculty.

Faculty mentors will be on hand to discuss the work underway. The seven teams now in operation include: Cloud-Crypto, Grid-Integrated Vehicles, High-Performance Computing, Artgineering, Drones, Virtual Reality and ScooterV2 .

Program application information is available online. For more information, send an email to VIP Program Director Andrew Novocin.

Summer camp trains students to be the first line of cyberdefense

Summer camp trains students to be the first line of cyberdefense

For the last nine years, Wilmington University has hosted an annual United States Cyber Challenge (USCC) summer camp, immersing dozens of students in week-long program with an intense curriculum focused on cybersecurity.

On Friday, 2018’s camp graduated over 40 students–some from Delaware, some from across the globe, as far away as South Korea, South Africa, and China.

Governor John Carney was one of the impressive speakers at the camps graduation. He said cyber security is a big deal and affects the nation on many levels.

“People’s data security is at risk, we have seen data breaches with commercial institutions, retail establishments over the last several years, so it is a real privacy concern,” said Carney. “There are cyberthreats in the military arranged as well.”

The camp educates, recruits, and informs the next generation by teaching them crucial skills which will help them one day be the country’s first line of cybersecurity.

“This is a really important camp to develop a workforce that we need to be successful in combating that kind of a threat,” said Carney.

According to the FBI, cybercrime is the third-greatest threat to U.S. national security, after nuclear war and weapons of mass destruction.

Congresswomen Lisa Blunt Rochester spoke to this year’s graduating class, instilling in them that this is not just a summer camp, but a way to take down the bad guys.

“In the Marvel comics it is usually ordinary people doing extraordinary things and right now the training that they just received are in areas that will help us with terrorism, its area that will help us with our personal private data our health care,” said Rochester. “I wanted them to understand the significance of this training that they are getting. They might feel like an ordinary person, but really the work that they are doing and help and save us all.”

The US Department of Homeland Security estimates the cost of cyber crime is $400 billion a year, and by 2022, there will be 1.8 million open jobs in cybersecurity–big business. With the average age of cyber professionals being 42, this camp does the following:

  • Developed student skills to help fill the ranks of cyber security professionals in and outside of government
  • Shortages of qualified cyber security personnel extend from the government to the U.S. defense industrial base, information systems contractors, utilities, telecommunications companies and most other segments of the critical infrastructure
  • The camp gives students in Delaware the chance to receive training from world class cyber security experts, practice their new skills, and inform them of educational and employment opportunities
  • Identify and nurture America top young people destined for careers in cyber security.

Krystian Bates, Patrick Mahoney, Alex Reuben and Hannah Tattan were this year’s camp scholarship recipients. Each student received a $2,500 award—a thousand to go towards IC-squared classes and the rest for schooling.

Bates is from Delaware and was one of this year’s graduates. He was first introduced to cybersecurity through his dad, who teaches ethical hacking and information security at Delaware Technical Community College.

“[The camp] taught me things that I could use later on, hopefully in the military, such as Computer forensics and ethical hacking,” said Bates.

Mahoney is originally from California and has been living in Delaware for the last six years. He is stationed here with the military and said he has always been a computer nerd. One thing that he learned from the camp was how vulnerable a computer really is.

“The fact that you can do so much harm without physically being at your target is pretty insane to me,” said Mahoney. “[Cyber security] isn’t for everyone but if you like tinkering with things, especially math, then you should give it a try.”

Published Jul 27, 2018