- Chemical Engineering sophomore Reed Boeger took first place in the Lightning Round Presentation Competition in UTC’s Second Annual ReSEARCH Dialogues. The highly successful two-day long event held in April highlighted the research initiatives of the University’s students and faculty, showcasing the scholarship and creative accomplishments of over 300 participants. With the support of his research advisor, Dr. Bradley Harris, Boeger shared his work entitled, “Studying Vibrio Cholerae Adaptations to Improve Cholera Prevention.” UC Foundation Professor in the Mechanical Engineering Department Dr. Cecelia Wigal brought home both first place honors in the Health Division of the Faculty Elevator Speech Competition and the overall Grand Prize in that division for her presentation entitled, “Communicating for Independence.” The continued research activities by Boeger and Wigal will be supported by funding and, in Dr. Wigal’s case, the hiring of a part-time graduate assistant.
- Dr. Wigal’s work in engineering design and her heart for discovering innovations and adaptations to assist persons who face developmental learning and/or physical challenges have been the foci of her research for several years. These research areas have also become integral parts of the College’s design courses, commitment to community outreach, and the annual Design and Research Showcase. During the spring semester, the collaborative work of our students and faculty in engineering design with not-for- profits in the community, including Signal Centers, Soddy and Spring Creek Elementary Schools, and the Tri-State Therapeutic Riding Center, resulted in over thirty new adaptive products including an oversized light board, stationary rocking chair, wheel chair busy board, and adapted art desk and table for use by special needs students including those with autism and cerebral palsy.
In addition to Reed Boeger and Dr. Wigal, the “winners” in these efforts are the community partners and the persons whose lives are enriched via the applied research of the students and faculty of CECS. Their hard work in fulfillment of the College’s commitment to community service is greatly appreciated by all.