I currently a Senior Optical Systems Engineer at SpectraWAVE, where I am working to develop new imaging technologies that will improve the treatment and outcomes of coronary artery disease (CAD). My core specialty is in the research and development of medical imaging devices that utilize optics to study, diagnose, and treat diseases throughout the body.
In 2013, I obtained a B.S. in Mechanical Engineering from Northeastern University in Boston, MA, earning minors in Electrical Engineering and Biomechanics. Through Northeastern’s immersive Co-op program, I completed 22 months of full-time work experience at three medical device companies in the greater Boston area.
My interest in biomedical optics originated from my time as an undergraduate research assistant in the Optical Science Laboratory, under the mentorship of Dr. Charles (“Chuck”) DiMarzio. I subsequently spent two summers as a research assistant at the Wellman Center for Photomedicine at Massachusetts General Hospital.
As a graduate student at The University of Texas at Austin, I completed my M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Biomedical Engineering with a Portfolio in Imaging and Informatics. I was co-advised by Dr. James Tunnell (Biophotonics Laboratory) and Dr. Michael Sacks (Willerson Center for Cardiovascular Modeling & Simulation). In my doctoral research, I studied how light interacts with tissue and used this knowledge to nondestructively study the complex structure and function of biological tissue. My main projects exploited the scattering of polarized and spatially structured light to probe the microscopic structure of tissue on a macroscopic scale. These novel techniques permitted rapid, quantitative evaluation of collagen alignment in cardiac tissues and tumor margins in skin cancers.
Post-graduation, I worked as a Senior Systems Engineer at NinePoint Medical, developing next generation clinical endoscopic Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT) devices for detecting disease in the esophagus, bile duct, and beyond. I was deeply involved in creating system specifications, designing and building prototypes, and troubleshooting the integration of complex hardware, software, and disposable sub-systems. Projects included hands-on development of custom high-power fiber lasers, rotary junctions, endoscopic catheter probes, analog and digital filters, image and signal processing algorithms, and more.
Most recently at SpectraWAVE, my role involves developing catheter-based multi-modal intravascular imaging. My core responsibilities have included: supporting early stage prototyping of the core optical systems; design, validation, and production of catheter optics; imaging and signal processing algorithm development; and supporting system integration.
I have a strong background in mechanical/electrical/optical system design and instrumentation, image processing, and light scattering theory. This has included extensive experience using Matlab, Labview, and Solidworks to produce computational models and analyze data, control complex electro-mechanical and optical systems, and design parts and assemblies, respectively. My research experience has given me deep theoretical insight in the areas of biomedical optics and soft tissue structure, and my industry experience has helped me prepare a practical, engineering-oriented approach to my projects. I have worked in several FDA medical device regulated settings and can navigate robust quality systems.
In addition to my cross-disciplinary technical experience, I have actively cultivated my leadership abilities with a continued presence in numerous leadership positions in student organizations and extracurricular activities. As an undergraduate, I completed the Gordon Engineering Leadership Program and received an Undergraduate Engineering Leadership Certificate. As a graduate student, I’ve supervised nearly 20 senior design teams over three years as a TA for the UT Biomedical Engineering Capstone/Senior Design class, which emphasizes engineering strategies relevant to medical device development. I have additionally mentored 10 undergraduate research assistants, four in conjunction with the UT BME CuRES / UTEP BUILD Research Experience for Undergraduates (REU) programs. Also at UT, I’ve served as a chair for both the Graduate Student Recruitment Committee and the Graduate/Undergraduate Research Union, as well as Vice President of the Biomedical Optics Graduate Organization (the UT Chapter of both SPIE and OSA). Finally, as both an undergraduate and graduate student, I’ve served as a captain for both the Northeastern University and The University of Texas Men’s Soccer Clubs.