The 13th Fred S. Grodins Graduate Research Symposium held on April 4 was a powerful program presenting a wide variety of outstanding work by PhD candidates from the Viterbi School’s Department of Biomedical Engineering.
Xiwu Cao, winner of Grodins Graduate Award for academic excellence and outstanding research, receives his certificate from BME Chair Michael Khoo.
“The Grodins Symposium provides a yearly opportunity for our PhD students to leave their labs for a day and to learn about what their peers are doing," said Professor Michael Khoo, BME Department Chair. "They also get a chance to meet faculty (whether primary faculty in BME or affiliated faculty) that they don’t normally run into, and to showcase their research to these faculty.”
This year, BME students presented 71 posters and 11 platform talks at the LA Convention Center, the first time the event was held off-campus.
Another novelty was the introduction of short overview talks highlighting the posters. “This was done primarily to increase interest in the posters—and it was a great success,” said Khoo.
The keynote speaker, Dr Javier Jo, is a BME alumnus who now holds a tenure-track position at Texas A&M University. His account of his transition from graduate student to professor hit a chord in the audience.
“I think the seminar was very helpful for the first year students. It helped them understand the purposes of their research more clearly and share it with others," said Suvimol “Ming” Sangkatumvong, who won first place for platform presentation."For many first year students, this was the first time they were presenting their academic works. And since each first year PhD student will have to give a research presentation at the end of the year as a part of their screening exam, the Grodins seminar is a perfect stage to practice.”
Posters, posters, posters! Click on the image for a Grodins slide show.
Ming added that, for senior students, the seminar was a great way to review their progress over the past year and network. “This also allows students, especially the senior ones who are no longer taking classes, to network with their peers,” she said.
Sponsors included The Alfred E. Mann Institute for Biomedical Engineering at the University of Southern California, Biomimetic MicroElectronic Systems, Amgen, AMO and USC Stevens Institute for Innovation.
The event’s top prize, the Grodins Graduate Award for academic excellence and outstanding research, went to Xiwu Cao for his work, "Dependence of Retinal Ganglion Cells’ Responses on Textures of Natural Scenes." Other prizes included:
And also: T-shirt & logo award:
story and photos by Newly Paul