2011

Photo of  Aaron  Stoller
Aaron Stoller Virginia TechAlliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought (ASPECT) doctoral program

Aaron graduated from Virginia Tech with his PhD in Philosophy in Education in 2013. Currently, he is Associate Director for University Honors Program at North Carolina State University. He obtained a BA in English from Wake Forest University, an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Arizona, and an MDiv from Wake Forest University, where he received the Wait Fellowship.

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Photo of  Alireza  Salmanzadeh
Alireza Salmanzadeh Virginia TechDepartment of Engineering Science and Mechanics

Alireza is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. He graduated from Virginia Tech with his PhD in Bioengineering and Biomedical Engineering in 2013. He is currently a Post Doc Researcher at University of California, Berkley. He received his B.S. from Iran University of Science and Technology in mechanical engineering and his M.S. from Sharif University in Aerospace Engineering, Tehran, Iran.

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Photo of  Aly  Tawfik
Aly Tawfik Virginia TechVia Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering

Aly Tawfik is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho and served as our first President in 2011/2012. He graduated from Virginia Tech with his Ph.D. in Civil and Environmental Engineering in 2012. Currently, he is an Assistant Professor at California State University in Fresno, CA. His PhD research was about how drivers choose their travel routes, and he is using Decision Theory as his modeling framework. For his research he is integrating theories from the fields of transportation and systems engineering, psychology and human factors, and econometrics and artificial intelligence. In his free time, Aly loves the outdoors and air and water sports.

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Photo of  Elizabeth  Savage
Elizabeth Savage Virginia Tech - Wake Forest School of Biomedical Engineering and Sciences

Elizabeth graduate from Virginia Tech with her M.S. in Biomedical Engineering. Currently, she is an engineer with Poly-Med, Inc. in South Carolina. Her MS work at Virginia Tech included working in Dr. Rafael Davalos’ lab on contactless dielectrophoretic (cDEP) microfluidic technology for rapid isolation of tumor-initiating cancer cells. She is also a member of the MultiSTEPS interdisciplinary program, in which trainees are prepared to solve problems at the intersection of biology and engineering through interdisciplinary coursework and research experience, while building an interactive community of students and professors from diverse disciplines.

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Photo of  Iman  Tavassoly
Iman Tavassoly Virginia TechGenetic, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (GBCB) doctoral program

Iman is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. He graduated from Virginia Tech with a PhD in Genetic, Bioinformatics and Computational Biology (GBCB) in 2013. Currently, he is a Post Doc Researcher at Icahn School of Medicine, Mt. Sinai, New York City. He graduated from medical school in 2007 and he is a medical doctor. His main research interests focus on Systems Biology of Complex Diseases. Currently he is working on Cancer Systems Biology and Mathematical Oncology.

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Photo of  Ivan  Sergejev
Ivan Sergejev Virginia TechSchool of Architecture and Design

Ivan is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. He graduated from Virginia Tech with his MS in Architecture in 2013. Currently, he is an architect with Alver Architecture in Estonia. While at Virginia Tech, he was a Fulbright fellow. He is a graduate of the Estonian Academy of Arts, winner of multiple awards and scholarships, and has gained a diverse professional experience in Estonia, Netherlands and the United States. In addition to his current Teaching Assistant positions, Ivan has served as an invited critic for numerous student reviews and is currently serving as a graduate jury member for the Pella Prize 2012 at the Virginia Tech School of Architecture+Design. His current research interest is the influence of the digital culture on the built environment, which is also the topic of his Master’s thesis. His auxiliary interests include computational design, biomimetics and extreme urbanism.

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Photo of  Johanna  Madrigal
Johanna Madrigal Virginia TechDepartment of Wood and Forest Products

Johanna is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. She graduated from Virginia Tech with a Ph.D. in 2013. Currently, she is Dean of School of Engineering at ULACIT in San José Costa Rica. She holds a BSc in Industrial Engineering and an MBA, both from Costa Rica Tech. She has 9 years of working experience in medical devices and electronic manufacturing field.

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Jordan Hill Virginia TechASPECT doctoral program (Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical and Cultural Thought)

Jordan Hill’s formal introduction to the field, practice, and theory of interdisciplinarity came in 2006 when I was awarded a two year research assistantship from Naropa University to create and compile information on Master’s level interdisciplinary program in the United States. This culminated in 2008 with the Association for Integrative Studies publication of my book the Interdisciplinary Master’s Program Directory (http://www.units.muohio.edu/aisorg/Masters/mastersdirectory.shtml), which surveys the programs in the US and includes an introduction that syntheses the insights about the institutional implementation about interdisciplinary practice in the twenty-first century. I am currently a Ph.D. student in the ASPECT program (Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical and Cultural Thought), a groundbreaking interdisciplinary program at Virginia Tech where I am working on dissertation that seeks to integrate the fields/disciplines of memory and monumentality studies, critical discourse analysis, and the history of violence in the United States. My research focuses on the changes taking place at the intersection of these fields at the turn of the twenty-first century

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Photo of  Karen  DePauw , PhD
Karen DePauw , PhD Vice President and Dean for Graduate Education, Professor in the Departments of Sociology and Human Nutrition, Foods & Exercise Virginia Tech

Dr. Karen DePauw earned an A.B. in Sociology from Whittier College, a M.S. in Special Education from California State University, Long Beach, and a Ph.D. in Kinesiology from Texas Woman’s University. She is the vicepresident and dean for Graduate education at Virginia Tech and previously taught with the Los Angeles City and Los Angeles County Schools and at California State University – Los Angeles. She has published over 75 books, journal articles and chapters and presented more than 150 keynote and scholar lectures around the world. She is a founding member and Facilitator/Chair for the Virginia Council of Graduate School (VCGS) and is a founding member of our new Honor Society. She is a strong advocate of interdisciplinary research. She has always been an inspiration for all of us, and, whenever needed, she has provided us with advice and support.

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Photo of  Marina  Vance
Marina Vance Virginia TechDepartment of Civil & Environmental Engineering
Nina Quadros was a Founding Member of IDR. She contributed in writing the IDR Mission Statement and By-Laws and was one of the designers for the IDR logo (along with Ivan Sergejev). Nina helped organize IDR Day 2011 and 2012, where she served as manager for the round table discussions (around 120 participants). Nina also helped organize the 2011 IDR Symposium (around 300 participants), where she was the poster judging and review manager (around 70 abstract submissions and 50 poster presentations).
Nina defended her PhD in Civil & Environmental Engineering at Virginia Tech in 2012. Her research focused on the potential human exposure to nanomaterials released during the normal use of consumer products.
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Photo of  Nasrin  Afzal
Nasrin Afzal Virginia TechPhysics Department

Nasrin is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. She graduated from Virginia Tech with a Ph.D. in Physics in 2013. Currently, she is a Post Doc Researcher with University of Delaware. Her PhD research was about time dependent mechanical response of cytoskeleton, and she is focusing on Non-Equilibrium Statistical Mechanics as her modeling framework. For her research she is integrating theories from physics, biology,computer science, engineering and mathematics. In her free time, Nasrin loves painting, calligraphy and sports.

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Photo of  Reed Walker Taylor
Reed Walker Taylor Virginia TechAlliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought (ASPECT) doctoral program

Reed is a forth year PhD candidate in the ASPECT program at Virginia Tech. The Alliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought (ASPECT) is an interdisciplinary doctoral program between the departments of History, Political Science, Philosophy, and Religion and Culture. Reed is also pursuing a graduate certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies as part of his dissertation research concerning the intersection of a postcolonial feminist politics, religious ethics, and identity formation in newly industrialized countries, specifically in the case of Aceh, Indonesia. More broadly, his research interests include Asian studies, postcolonial theory and praxis, feminist theory, critiques of global capitalism, and contemporary Islamic political thought.

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Photo of  Risa R. Pesapane
Risa R. Pesapane Virginia TechDepartment of Fish and Wildlife Conservation

Risa was a Founding Member of IDR. She served as President from 2011 – 2012. She earned her Bachelor’s degrees in Wildlife Science (2006) and Biology (2007) from Virginia Tech as well as a Master’s degree in disease transmission dynamics at the interface of human and wildlife populations (2011). Risa is passionate about interdisciplinary research and educational outreach endeavors and has a fervent desire to learn new skills. Risa also chaired a novel mentoring initiative at Virginia Tech and participated in the university’s strategic planning process. For her graduate research, she partnered with a non-profit organization aimed at sustainable community development, mitigating wildlife conflict, managing human and wildlife health, and overall improving the livelihoods of local citizens. As a professional, Risa has several years of experience in researching human and wildlife health, project management, office administration, and business. She recently served as Project Director for an environmental tech startup and Executive Director of the non-for-profit Cabell Brand Center for Global Poverty and Resource Sustainability Studies. In June of 2014, Risa will begin a PhD program with the Graduate Group of Ecology at the University of California, Davis to further study the coupled nature of disease transmission between human and natural systems in regard to global health and conservation. She is particularly interested in how social network theory can be applied to transmission dynamics between species within an ecosystem.

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Photo of  Santhip Krishnan Kanholy
Santhip Krishnan Kanholy Virginia TechDepartment of Mechanical Engineering

Santhip Krishnan Kanholy is a second year PhD student in Mechanical Engineering doing research in CFD with a focus on multiphase flow. His other interdisciplinary research interests lie in study of consciousness, and nature.

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Photo of  Seth J. Bartee
Seth J. Bartee Virginia TechAlliance for Social, Political, Ethical, and Cultural Thought (ASPECT) doctoral program

Seth Bartee is a second-year doctoral student in the ASPECT program. His research interests include the intersection of religion, politics, and culture in twentieth-century America. Currently, he is working on a larger project that looks at complex divisions within the American conservative movement during the Cold War. In this interdisciplinary project, he seeks to create a space to study how various discourse about order defined conservatism and created space where conservative and liberal academics came to agree on certain principles.

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Photo of  Shaimaa  Lazem
Shaimaa Lazem Virginia TechDepartment of Computer Science

Shaimaa is one of the Founding Members of Iota Delta Rho. She graduated from Virginia Tech with a Ph.D. in Computer Science in 2012. Currently, she is a researcher at City of Scientific Research and Technological Applications in Egypt. Her dissertation work dealt with distributed groups in online 3D virtual worlds. She studies how group members coordinate their actions and decisions in an environment that lacks many of the non-verbal cues we have in Face to Face interaction. Additionally, she explores how online groups respond to the problems they encounter at system level, such as latency and inconsistency in the shared state. Shaimaa graduated from Alexandria University, Egypt with a B.Sc. of Computer Science and Automatic Control in June 2000 and with a M.Sc. of Computer Science in March 2006.

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Photo of  Souvick  Chatterjee
Souvick Chatterjee Virginia TechDepartment of Engineering Science and Mechanics

Presently I am a second year PhD student in the department of Engineering Science and Mechanics working on modeling flows inside insects. Precisely, my present work, part of an EFRI (Emerging Frontiers in Research and Innovation)-NSF (National Science Foundation) project involves modeling mosquito drinking, experimental results of which show interesting yet to be explained phenomenon. The model, essentially a micro-scale fluid-structure interaction problem with flow rectification, provides an insight to the unanswered questions.

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Photo of  Tammy E. Parece
Tammy E. Parece Virginia TechDepartment of Geography

Tammy was a Founding Member of IDR. She served as Vice-President of Membership from 2010 – 2014. Tammy has a BS in Interdisciplinary Studies from Virginia Commonwealth University and an MS in Geography from Virginia Tech. Currently, she is a Ph.D. Candidate in Geospatial and Environmental Analysis. She is developing a geospatial model to optimally site urban agriculture within the City of Roanoke, Virginia. She works extensively in K-12 STEM outreach and integrates undergrad students in her research and outreach activities. She anticipates completing her Ph.D. in 2015.

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Photo of  Tobias  Ecker ,PhD
Tobias Ecker ,PhD Virginia TechDepartment of Aerospace & Ocean Engineering
Website: Visit Website Birthday: June 18th 2015

Tobias holds a PhD in Aerospace Engineering which he received in 2015, as well as a M.S. in Aerospace Engineering from Virginia Tech in 2011. He received his B.Eng. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Applied Sciences Trier in 2008. He was a German Fulbright scholar to Virginia Tech from 2009 until 2011. His research interests include turbo machinery, multiphase flow, laser based flow measurements and biomedical flows. To balance his research Tobias likes to play soccer, photograph and dance. Tobias is a founding member and former treasurer of the Interdisciplinary Research Honor Society.

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