September 2010

Mario Modeste

Mario Modeste is a graduate student at the University of Trinidad and Tobago. He enjoys reading scientific journals and software development.

Thea Sahr

Thea Sahr produces national educational outreach initiatives and messaging campaigns that raise awareness, build audience, and extend the educational value of WGBH resources. She focuses on engineering and science projects such as Design Squad, ZOOM, NOVA, and Engineer Your Life. Working with WGBH project teams and national subject-area experts, Ms. Sahr develops multimedia educational materials and builds relationships with national partners to engage adults and children in the exploration of science and engineering. Ms. Sahr facilitates national training workshops for educators to incorporate WGBH's educational resources in their programming, and she helps engineers and scientists learn how to effectively talk to students.

Sirena Hargrove-Leak

Sirena Hargrove-Leak is an Assistant Professor of Engineering in the Dual-Degree Engineering Program at Elon University. She received a PhD in chemical engineering from the University of South Carolina, and MS and BS degrees in chemical engineering from NC Agricultural and Technical State University. She is exploring the beneficial uses of K-12 outreach and service-learning to address issues related to retention in engineering education. Her research interests also include heterogeneous catalysis for fine chemical and pharmaceutical applications and membrane separations. When not teaching engineering courses, she enjoys teaching science and engineering courses for non-majors.

Senay Purzer

Senay Purzer is an Assistant Professor in the School of Engineering Education at Purdue University. She is also the Co-director of Assessment Research for the Institute for P-12 Engineering Research and Learning (INSPIRE). She received a PhD and a MA in Science Education, Department of Curriculum and Instruction from Arizona State University. Her creative research focuses on collaborative learning, design and decision-making, and the role of engineering self-efficacy on student achievement. Dr. Purzer teaches undergraduate-level innovation and design and graduate-level engineering education courses.

Margot Sigur

Margot Sigur is an Outreach Coordinator at WGBH Educational Foundation. She helps develop hands-on science and engineering activities, and provides trainings and guidance around the use of these activities for the PBS series DESIGN SQUAD and FETCH! with Ruff Ruffman. These series work toward the goal of increasing interest in the fields of science and engineering.

Ronald Croen

Ronald A. Croen is an entrepreneur, educator, business advisor, and private investor. Croen currently serves as Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Tufts University in the Gordon Institute of the School of Engineering, where he teaches entrepreneurial leadership. His experience spans a variety of sectors in the information technology and communications industries. He was the founder and CEO for approximately ten years of Nuance Communications, a global leader in voice recognition technology and applications. Croen began his career as an associate of the law firm of Rifkind & Sterling, Inc., in Beverly Hills, California, where he specialized in corporate securities and computer law. He joined minicomputer vendor The Ultimate Corp. in 1983, eventually leading its European operations, based in Paris, France. Mr. Croen spent five years living in France and is fluent in French. Mr. Croen earned a B.A. from Tufts University, and a J.D. degree from the University of Pennsylvania Law School, both with honors.

Philippe Sommer

Philippe Sommer is Director of the Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership at Darden and manages the diverse portfolio of entrepreneurship opportunities that are supported by Darden's Batten endowment. He also teaches MBA courses in the management of life science businesses and entrepreneurship. Prior to joining Darden, Sommer was president and founder of Alsacia & Sommer, Inc., which provided strategy-consulting services and funding for early-stage med-tech companies. Previously, he was a founding partner of WestMed Venture Funds, publicly registered life sciences venture capital funds affiliated with CIBC/Oppenheimer, Inc. He has also served as director of business development in the medical products group for Pfizer, Inc. Sommer has extensive experience in fund management, private investments, M&A, licensing and technology transfer. Sommer serves on the advisory boards of the Coulter Foundation Grant to the Biomedical Engineering Department at UVa, NanoSTAR Institute (nanotechnology) at UVA, the LaunchPad funds and the Buchanan Endowment Program of the Medical School, also at UVa.

Maria Oden

Maria Oden is a Professor in the Practice of Bioengineering and the Director of the Oshman Engineering Design Kitchen at Rice University, where she works closely with the global health design program. She worked with the course "Technology Commercialization in Developing Countries" as the engineering faculty member.

Peer Sathikh

Peer Sathikh was trained as an industrial designer at the Royal College of Art, London and the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay. He also holds a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. After co-founding Inovasia Design, a prominent design consultancy, in 1996 in Singapore, he merged the company in 2005 into a specialist manufacturer, after which he was named the Lead Innovator of that company. In 2008, Peer joined the School of Art, Design and Media of the Nanyang Technological University as an Assistant Professor to teach the product design undergraduate program. Of late, Peer's design interests lie in designing mission critical control centers for raid transit systems and airports. His clients include HP, Motorola, Polycom, Siemens, Chubb, Philips and more. As an academic, Peer's research interests are in culture, products and artificial intelligence, cultivating innovation, and industrial design pedagogy.

Pritpal Singh

Pritpal Singh is Professor and Chair of the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Villanova University. He is also Director of the Engineering Entrepreneurship minor program and is the principal investigator on two NCIIA Sustainable Vision grants.