Mechanical Engineering

Research Interests

My research is in the mechanical design of soft robots. I use compliant plastics, rubbers, and fabrics to create flexible devices that can safely interact with humans and passively adapt to their environment. My recent work has been on a plant-root inspired burrowing robot that can “grow” into the ground.

Mentoring Experiences

I have had the privilege of mentoring numerous undergraduate, master’s, and PhD students at UCSB. My undergrad mentees are building a payload that will go to space, have authored five journal and conference papers, and have gone on to prestigious academic and industry opportunities. Mentorship plays an important role in my graduate career and is a major factor in my decision to become a professor.

Meaning of the Award

I am honored to be recognized for my mentorship. It is an aspect of my PhD that has been very impactful to me, and hopefully my mentees, but is not always the most visible on paper.