Student Engineers Chosen for New VCU Program

VCU School of Engineering Dean’s Early Research Initiative (DERI) has chosen five MLWGS students for its highly competitive and challenging new program:  
Caroline O’Brien (Henrico '15), Anant Kharkar (Henrico '15), Nivetha Saravanan (Henrico '15), James Tyler (Henrico '15), and Benjamin Wong (Henrico '15). 

The DERI program was founded for the purpose of collaboration, fusing new and previously unrealized ideas with the talent and experience of professional engineers. In this inaugural year of the program, students will learn, explore, and create something new as they complete 60 hours during this summer and continue throughout the next academic year by committing to a minimum of four hours per week. Four of the five students will be participating in this program as part of their Senior Mentorship Experience. Sharon Parker, the Senior Seminar/Mentorship Program Coordinator, attended a ceremony on the evening of Friday, May 23, with the students who were paired with their respective mentors and research topics.

Fellow: Caroline O’Brien
Mentor: Ethan Lotz
Faculty: Barbara Boyan, Ph.D.
Project: Effects of Titanium Surface Nanostructures Induced by Oxidation on the Enhancement of Osteoblastic Differentiation

Fellow: Anant Kharkar
Mentor: Bhanu Kamapantula
Faculty: Preetam Ghosh, Ph.D.
Project: BioRobust: An Online Framework to Determine the Robustness of Biological Networks

Fellow: Nivetha Saravanan
Mentor: Joseph Herbert
Faculty: Rebecca Heise, Ph.D.
Project: Therapeutic Effect of Vitamin C on Ventilator Induced Lung Injury in an Aging Mouse Model

Fellow: James Tyler
Mentor: Hossain Md Iftekhar
Faculty: Supriyo Bandyopadhyay, Ph.D.
Project: Growth of Nano-rod Magnets and their Characterization

Fellow: Benjamin Wong
Mentor: Robert Pouliot
Faculty: Rebecca Heise, Ph.D.
Project: Investigation of Cell – ECM Interactions on Gene Expression and Cell Fate