"Undergraduate research has opened many doors for me and allowed me to grow academically and professionally at an exponential rate. Undergraduate research is an amazing opportunity for all students..”
— Evan Bissiri
Evan Bissiri is a Biomedical Engineering major in the School of Biomedical Engineering from the graduating class of 2018. He has participated in the STAR Scholars Program (Summer 2014) and is a member of the Undergraduate Research Leaders. He has also chosen to continue his research from the STAR Scholars Program during his first co-op at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia.
During STAR, Evan completed a project titled “Shape Analysis of Pediatric Thoracic Vertebrae using Generalized Procrustes Analysis” under the mentorship of Dr. Sriram Balasubramanian.
According to Evan, “the significance of my research is that the information I gathered can be used in conjunction with existing information to create shape models of the thoracic spine. This will aid in rapidly developing average shape models which can be morphed to create patient specific shape models quickly. This can aid in surgical intervention and deformity prediction and diagnosis. My decision to participate in undergraduate research has led to strong professional connections. My STAR mentors and I are currently working on a paper on this research that we intend to publish, on which I will be listed as one of the main authors. Undergraduate research has opened many doors for me and allowed me to grow academically and professionally at an exponential rate. Undergraduate research is an amazing opportunity for all students.”
Evan has participated in a number of research conferences, including Philadelphia Spine Research Symposium 2014 at University of Pennsylvania, the National Collegiate Research Conference (NCRC) at Harvard University (January 2015), the Colonial Academic Alliance Undergraduate Research Conference at Drexel University (March 2015), and the National Conference on Undergraduate Research (NCUR) at Eastern Washington University (April 2015).
After attending NCRC 2015, Evan had glowing remarks for the experience, calling it “informative, inspiring, and very thought provoking.” At this student-run conference, Evan and the other eight Drexel students selected as conference presenters - as well as the hundreds of other student conference attendees - had the opportunity to hear from keynote speakers such as Temple Grandin and Robert Langer, the most cited engineer in history. The conference also provided an opportunity for students to discuss pertinent issues, such as research in academia versus industry, the pitfalls of publishing research, and thought exercises on climate change and technological solutions to problems posed by the conference attendees. After the experience, Evan said that he is “reinvigorated with a want to do more research and improve in [his] previous endeavors” - and we are sure that he will!
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