2017 Fall Workshop Participants (A-H)

Obiechina Abakporo
Mechanical Engineering

I’m a graduate, doctoral student at the FAMU-FSU College of Engineering. I found and directed the AEIMD Summer Science STEM Camp at FAMU in 2012. In addition to engineering, I have musical and entrepreneurial ambitions. Also, I was an undefeated amateur boxer during some of my undergraduate and graduate career.


Melissa Abler
Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics

Mel Abler is a fourth year PhD student at Columbia University focusing on experimental studies of turbulence and nonlinear wave coupling in dipole plasmas. She is a strong advocate for increased diversity and inclusion in physics, co-founding student chapters of oSTEM at both Wisconsin and Columbia and co-organizing a 2018 CUWiP.



Scott Beamer
Computer Science

Scott is a computer architect who designs computer systems and algorithms to improve communication efficiency in order to improve performance, save energy, and reduce cost. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow at Lawrence Berkeley National Lab (LBNL), and he earned his doctorate in Computer Science from UC Berkeley.


Jodi Boutte

Jodi Boutté is a Ph.D. student in Engineering Science concentrating in Human Factors and Ergonomics at Louisiana State University A&M in Baton Rouge, LA; she also holds a M.S. in Engineering Science and a B.S. in Kinesiology. Ms. Boutte’s current research focuses on Human Factors in Healthcare.


Robin Brewer
Computer Science and Communication Studies

Robin Brewer is a Presidential Postdoctoral Fellow at University of Michigan. She received her Ph.D. from Northwestern University in Technology and Social Behavior. Her research lies at the intersection of accessibility, social computing, and voice-based interfaces. Robin is also heavily involved in CS outreach for girls.




Grace Bushnell
Biomedical Engineering

Grace is a fifth year PhD student in Biomedical Engineering at University of Michigan in the laboratory of Lonnie Shea. Her research is focused on developing biomaterials for the study, detection, and treatment of metastatic cancer. Grace is an avid reader and enjoys powerlifting, running, and spending time in nature.





Twan Capehart
Mechanical Engineering

I am Twan Capehart, a doctoral candidate in robotics at Florida A & M University; specifically focused on variable stiffness mechanisms for robotic limbs. I am highly interested in education on every level. I am currently and have been involved in multiple leadership roles, mentoring, community outreach, teaching and tutoring.



Sarah Cusson
Aerospace Engineering

Sarah is a Ph.D. candidate in the Plasmadynamics and Electric Propulsion Laboratory at the University of Michigan. She advised by Dr. Alec Gallimore and Dr. Benjamin Jorns. Her research focuses on long-life Hall thrusters for space exploration. She is a NASA Space Technology Research Fellow, Amelia Earhart Fellow and an AIAA Orville and Wilbur Wright Graduate Fellow.


Dianna Dillstrom

Diana is a Ph.D. candidate in biomedical engineering at the University of Michigan. Her research interests involve isolating the effects of bisphosphonates during different stages of skeletal development. She holds a M.S. in biomedical engineering from the University of Rochester and a B.S. in mechanical engineering from the University of California, Berkeley.


Karen Dowling
Electrical Engineering

Karen Dowling is a 5th year Ph.D. candidate in electrical engineering at Stanford. Her interests are in widebandgap based sensors for extreme environments, in particular hall devices. She is an NSF Graduate Research Fellow and also served as the student president of the NSF ERC for power optimization of electro-thermal systems (POETS).


Chinwendu Enyioha
Electrical and Systems Engineering

Chinwendu Enyioha is a Postdoctoral Fellow in Electrical Engineering at Harvard. His research is in limited-communication coordination of distributed and networked decision systems, with applications in Cyber-physical and future energy systems. Chinwendu is Fellow of the Ford Foundation.




Denae Ford
Computer Science

Denae Ford is a Doctoral Student in the Department of Computer Science at North Carolina State University. Her research identifies and dismantles participation barriers of online socio-technical ecosystems. She earned both her Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees from North Carolina State University. Denae is a GEM, NSF, and Microsoft Research Fellow.


Marcel Georgin

Marcel received his Bachelors of Science from McGill University in Physics and is a graduate student in the Applied Physics program at the University of Michigan. He is conducting his dissertation research in the Plasmadynamics and Electric Propulsion Laboratory on the physics of hollow cathodes. His graduate research is supported by the NASA Space Technology Research Fellowship.



Brittany Givens
Chemical and Biochemical Engineering

I am a fourth year PhD candidate at the University of Iowa in Chemical Engineering. I completed my B.S. from the University of Pittsburgh in Spring 2014 and my M.S. from Iowa in Spring 2017. I chose to pursue my PhD to become a professor at a research institution.


Johanna Heureaux-Torres
Mechanical Engineering

Johanna is a PhD-candidate in Mechanical Engineering at U-M. Her research in Liu-Lab focuses on pioneering novel mechanical sensing and response capabilities in mammalian cells through the genetic introduction of a bacterial, membrane-tension activated channel-protein. Johanna leverages her PhD experience to increase URM student STEM awareness and access through SHPE.

Not Pictured

Alejandro Campos

Britteny English

Nicole Febles