Six Women STEM Scholars Honored by Johnson & Johnson

In 2015, Johnson & Johnson launched the WiSTEM2D (Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, Manufacturing, and Design) program to increase the representation of women in these fields and support the development of women leaders. The WiSTEM2D Scholars Awards, established in 2017, support the research of one woman from each of the program’s six disciplines. The following are this years’ six Scholars Award winners.

Katia Vega is an assistant professor of design at the University of California, Davis. Her research focuses on using the human body as a source of wearable technology. She uses a concept called “beauty technology” in which electronics are embedded into beauty products in order to make the body surface become interactive. She plans to conduct future experiments with interactive skin and biosensors.

Dr. Vega is a graduate of the National University of San Marcos in Peru, where she majored in computer science. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. both in computer science from the Pontifical Catholic University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Ronke Olabisi is an assistant professor of biomedical engineering at Rutgers University in New Jersey. Her research focuses on tissue engineering and regenerative medicine to repair or build de novo tissues for treating defects due to injury, disease, aging, or spaceflight. Her currently project aims to develop a new hydrogel that can be placed over an injury and constantly deliver insulin and stem cell growth factors for faster skin and tissue growth.

Dr. Olabisi is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where she majored in mechanical engineering. She holds a master’s degree in mechanical engineering and a master’s degree in aeronautical engineering both from the University of Michigan, and a Ph.D. biomedical engineering from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Grace X. Gu is an assistant professor of mechanical engineering at the University of California, Berkeley. Her research interests include composites, additive manufacturing, fracture mechanics, topology optimization, machine learning, finite element analysis, and bio-inspired materials. Her current project focuses on developing a more efficient 3D printer that can self-correct during a print job.

Dr. Gu is a graduate of the University of Michigan where she majored in mechanical engineering. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. both in mechanical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

Rebecca Morrison is an assistant professor of computer science at the University of Colorado. Her research lies at the interface between physics-based and data-driven models. She is currently working to identify flexible algorithms that can run calculations on shifting variables more quickly and accurately.

Dr. Morrison is a graduate of Scripps College in Claremont, California, where she majored in physics. She holds a master’s degree in computational and applied mathematics and a Ph.D. in computational science, engineering, and mathematics both from the University of Texas.

Naama Geva-Zatorsky is an assistant professor of medicine at Technion-Israel Institute of Technology in Haifa, Israel. Her research combines systems-biology with microbiology and immunology to study the interactions between gut microbes and the host immune system in health and disease.

Dr. Geva-Zatorsky is a summa cum laude graduate of Tel Aviv University in Israel where she double-majored in chemistry and biology. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. from the Weizmann Institute in Rehovot, Israel.

Shengxi Huang is an assistant professor of electrical engineering at Pennsylvania State University. Her research interests include biomedical devices and systems, electronic materials and devices, and optical materials, devices, and systems. Currently, she is developing a device to measure potential disease-causing biomolecules, such as cancer cells.

Dr. Huang is a graduate of Tsinghua University in Beijing, China, where she majored in micro and nano electronics. She holds a master’s degree and Ph.D. in electrical engineering.

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