Class of 2020
Mauricio received his B.A. in Psychology and B.S. in Biology from Florida International University. He is board certified as a behavior analyst and worked in the field for over five years in Miami and San Francisco before starting medical school. His research interests include aging, neurodegenerative diseases, and robotics. His plan is to improve healthcare in underserved communities by utilizing the latest technology to maximize efficiency and lower cost. During his free time, he likes exploring cities, meeting new people, reading the latest astronomical research, riding his bike, caring for his Venus flytrap, and expanding his vinyl collection.
Chris grew up in the suburbs of Sacramento, California and has always been an avid fan of inventing. His other hobbies include cooking, skiing, tennis, and traveling. As an undergraduate, he studied bioengineering at UC Berkeley. His research experiences include microfluidic research (for point of care diagnostic testing) and Alzheimer’s disease research. As a part of his gap year before medical school, he applied his engineering skills to help his parents start an orchard. As a part of the IMED program, he hopes to learn more about how to how to apply engineering principles toward developing solutions that will improve patient care.
Susan’s curiosity in the intersection of technology and medicine began during her undergraduate studies at the University of Chicago while she was studying biology and conducting research in immunology. At this time, she also become fascinated in the field of synthetic biology and co-founded and led the University of Chicago’s first team to participate in the 2013 International Genetically Engineered Machines (iGEM) contest held in Toronto. After graduating in 2014, she followed her passion in biotechnology at the National Institutes of Health as a research fellow in cellular cancer immunotherapy. Currently her goals in IMED are to broaden her knowledge of other technological fields and learn about their applicability to medicine and public health. Ultimately, she hopes to develop a capstone project that supplies innovative healthcare solutions and bridges together technology and community service. In her free time, she likes to read, watch Netflix, practice yoga, play the ukulele, and meet new people!
Danielle, an Illinois native, grew up in a rural town southwest of Chicago. She attended Gonzaga University where she graduated in December 2013 with a Bachelor in Science in Biology with research concentration. While studying at Gonzaga, Danielle spent a semester studying biochemistry at Trinity College in Dublin, Ireland. She also spent a summer researching oscillatory shear stress and angiogenesis at Weill Cornell Medical School. After graduation, Danielle spent three years in cardiovascular research at the University of Chicago. She looks forward to learning ways to incorporate her background in research to solving problems in the medical field. Outside of school, Danielle enjoys spending time with her family and traveling.
Alana grew up in the Chicago area and graduated from MIT in 2016 with a degree in mechanical engineering. As a college student she worked on a project investigating the use of electrical circuits to quantify polymer stability, and she also worked on a project investigating the effectiveness of potential treatments for autism spectrum disorders. She is eager to participate in the IMED program and hopes to gain experience developing new medical technologies. Outside of academics, Alana enjoys doing stand-up comedy, working out, and watching Chicago sports teams especially the Blackhawks.
Originally from the small town of Villers-Le-Temple, Belgium, Jonathan studied biochemistry and mathematics at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His research primarily involved engineering protein-shell microspheres as contrast for OCT and targeted to atherosclerotic lesions. Before starting medical school, he worked on tobacco studies at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and completed a brief stint on the Ebola response at the height of the epidemic. Jonathan looks forward to working as part of an interdisciplinary team on developing cost-effective medical devices through IMED. In his free time, he enjoys rock climbing and hiking.
A Chicago native, David spent six years serving in the US Army as a combat medic. After completing his term of service, David attended the University of Illinois in Urbana-Champaign where he worked in a behavioral genetics lab and graduated in 2007 with a degree in mathematics. From 2007 to 2015, David worked in the telecommunications industry as an engineer and ultimately the vice-president of a technology firm in the south suburbs of Chicago. He looks forward to learning ways to apply his background in mathematics and engineering to problems in the medical field. Outside of school, David is an avid runner, triathlete and musician, and plays saxophone with the Barrister’s Big Band.
Joseph Sauer is a registered patent attorney and holds inactive memberships with the Illinois and District of Columbia bars. Joseph graduated from Wheaton College with B.A. in psychology (2003) and B.S. in Biology (2006). He earned J.D. at Marquette University Law School (2006) and M.S. in Biotechnology at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland (2010). Following completion of M.S. at Johns Hopkins, Joseph served as a psychiatric counselor at MedStar Union Memorial Hospital in Baltimore under Dr. Claude Smith. This experience proved transformative and Joseph decided to forego further training in the law in favor of medical school. While applying to medical school Joseph held teaching assistantships at the Harvard University Extension School in Physics and General Chemistry and served as a senior laboratory teaching fellow at Harvard College in Chemistry and Chemical Biology. In 2015, Joseph received a Certificate of Distinction in Teaching from the Bok Center, Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology. His research experience includes studying stapled peptide synthesis at the Verdine Laboratory, Harvard Department of Stem Cell and Regenerative Biology. Joseph is interested in cellular metabolism, drug development, biomedical devices and serving patients directly in clinical practice.
Aakash grew up in Lombard, IL and is a first year medical student at the University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine. He graduated from Northwestern University with a degree in Economics and Biology and co-founded a startup in the medical device industry. While at Northwestern, Aakash received a research grant to work in a lab working on regeneration in planarians. After graduation, he went on to work at Uptake, a Chicago-based unicorn startup working in big data and the internet of things. In his spare time, Aakash enjoys reading a wide variety of books and running outside.
Sariya received her Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics and Computer Science from Loyola University Chicago in 2015. She then completed a Masterâ€™s program in Education Technology at Harvard University in 2016, where she focused on medical educational product design. While in Boston, Sariya also took part in interdisciplinary medical product engineering courses, working on design of low-cost medical diagnostics for retinal disease. She is excited to use her engineering background and passion for interdisciplinary problem solving to learn more about and contribute to the world of medical technology.
Marta grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and went to Northwestern University for undergraduate studies where she studied Cognitive Science. While at school, she helped develop a patient health monitor phone application. Excited by this project, after graduation, Marta went on to work for Epic, an electronic medical records company. She looks forward to continuing developing her interests in health technology through UIC’s IMED program.
Mike graduated from Johns Hopkins University with a degree in Biophysics in 2014. In college, he engaged in various technology projects, including a fellowship to evaluate didactic methods in biophysics using an open-source Java viewer of macromolecular structures. Through another grant, he also studied the effectiveness of third-generation ventricular assist devices as a destination treatment for heart failure, alongside an evaluation of an adjusted eligibility criteria for heart transplantation. Technology in education and healthcare is one of his growing passions. Before attending medical school, he took two years off to intern at a start-up pharmaceutical company in Baltimore – an opportunity that allowed him to gain a perspective of medicine in an industrial and business context. Alongside nine other members of the company, he aided in achieving FDA approval for a life-saving pediatric orphan drug in the hepatology space. His goal is to graduate with an M.D/M.B.A to work as a clinician-entrepreneur.