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Jin Lee

Students gain professional skills through undergraduate research August 10, 2018

McMaster Engineering undergraduate research assistants shared the research projects they have been working on this past summer at the Undergraduate Research Poster Showcase and Ice Cream Social on August 9.

Hosted in partnership by Engineering Co-op and Career Services and the Undergraduate Student Research in Engineering Club, the event gave students the opportunity to demonstrate their presentation skills and celebrate their accomplishments.

Meet 5 students who presented their innovative research projects:

Name and Program: Jessica Trac, Electrical and Biomedical Engineering 

Research: Trac works with Natalia Nikolova, Electrical and Computing Engineering professor on a microwave imaging system for breast cancer screening. She also worked with PhD student, Dan on improving the images from the system.

“I wanted to work with Natalia mainly because of the application. I think this is a really promising research project that can impact a lot of people. Natalia’s been really good to work with. I learned a lot.”

“What makes a good mentor and supervisor is their ability to make time for you and be invested in your growth and Natalia prioritizes seeing all of her students individually and also in a group setting.”  

Jessica Trac

Name and Program: Alexander Barovier, Engineering Physics

Research: Barovier is simulating a thermal electric device that uses a temperature difference to produce voltage difference for a battery.

“I saw research as another job at first but now I realize it’s not that way. I don’t see my mentor as being my boss. He is really open to talking about things.”

"Self-learning is a powerful thing I took away from this experience. You know the basics but you have to learn the rest. It’s an important skill that can translate to different areas.”

 Alexander Barovier

Names and Programs: (L to R) Annika Yardy, Chemical and BioEngineering and Jennifer Tian, Biology and Chemistry

Research: They both work with Heather Sheardown, professor, Chemical Engineering on developing contact lenses designed to deliver drugs to the back of the eye.

A: “I would like to do something after graduation in the biomedical field and I liked how this lab focused on drug delivery. It was very interesting to me. I learned a lot about the science behind things – how molecules bind together and react."

A: “I felt I’ve grown a lot as a person this summer. I’ve built my confidence and improved my speaking abilities. I’d like to credit this to my supervisor.”

J: “I like how Heather incorporates things from different fields, not just engineering. She has people from biology, chemistry so they can all come together to produce a good project.”

J: “This experience is getting me out there and pushing my boundaries.”

 Annika Yardy, Jennifer Tian

Name and Program: Asad Hussanain, Mechanical Engineering and Management

Research: Working with Materials Science and Engineering Assistant Professor, Kathryn Grandfield, Hussanain is characterizing alloys to enhance osteo-integration within the body. This will improve how implants attach to bone.  

“This experience helps you realize that research can be implemented. We were doing these characterizations so we can create implants for people who need them.”

“All of this research is brand new to me. I started from scratch and learned something new. I worked with Masters students, Brian and Chiara who were a huge help. They are super busy with their own work but if you need help they will sit down with you.”

 Asad Hussanain


Name and Program: Stephanie Lin, Software Engineering

Research: Lin is helping Computing and Software Engineering Associate Professor, Christopher Anand, encourage young students to learn about computer science and math and to pursue STEM fields through computer programming workshops.

"I have a passion for teaching and I love giving back to others. I would love to consider working as a teacher or professor and help people learn and overcome barriers."

"Sometimes kids like to give up quickly but I learned how to persevere and be patient. I learned how to be an effective communicator and more understanding and helpful to other people."

Stephanie Lin