Current Fellows

David Kale

Dave Kale is a fourth-year PhD student in Computer Science, working on learning latent space representations of health and illness from multimodal clinical data, including sensor time series, lab tests, text, and codes. His advisor is Professor Greg Ver Steeg of the Information Sciences Institute.

Most recently, Dave is among a small number of researchers investigating whether deep neural networks, which represent the state of the art in a variety of applications, can be successfully applied to clinical data and problems.

Dave is affiliated with the Laura P. and Leland K. Whittier Virtual Pediatric Intensive Care Unit (VPICU) at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles and the USC Center for Body Computing. He is a co-founder of Podimetrics and a judge in the Qualcomm Tricorder XPRIZE Competition.

Dave holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Symbolic Systems and a Master of Science degree in Computer Science from Stanford University.

Samantha McBirney

Samantha McBirney is a fourth-year PhD student in Professor Andrea Armani’s research group. Her research interests include developing novel optical sensors to study blast-induced neurotrauma and to detect catheter-related bloodstream infections before a patient becomes symptomatic, among other things. See Samantha’s latest discovery to detect staph infections earlier in this article.

Samantha is also very passionate about empowering young women to pursue STEM, as she is involved in several different outreach groups that focus on mentoring young women interested in STEM-related fields.

Alfred E. Mann Biomedical Engineering Doctoral Fellowship

Angelica Cobo

Angelica Cobo is pursuing her PhD under the lead of her advisor, Professor Ellis Meng, in USC’s Biomedical Microsystems Laboratory (BML) on the study of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) for application to the human body and other biological systems (bioMEMS).

Her research entails the design, fabrication, and characterization of implantable polymer-based bioMEMS, devices made of soft plastics that can safely be implanted within the body for diagnostic and therapeutic applications. The main topics in her doctoral research focus on the development of an implantable wireless drug delivery device for management of chronic diseases and rare childhood cancers, and a peripheral nerve interface for restoration of sensorimotor function in amputees.

Ruchi Deshpande

Ruchi Deshpande is pursuing her PhD under Dr. Brent Liu’s guidance, at the Image Processing and Informatics Laboratory. She is developing an informatics system to provide decision support for treatment planning in radiation therapy of head and neck cancer. The system features knowledge-driven data mining algorithms that assist clinicians in selecting and evaluating IMRT dose constraints, so as to minimize the radiation dose exposure of healthy organs.

Kevin Keomanee-Dizon

Kevin Keomanee-Dizon is a PhD student jointly advised by Professors Daniel Farkas and Scott Fraser at the USC Translational Imaging Center. His scientific training is in applied physics and optical bioimaging. His research centers on developing novel photonic technologies for high-resolution imaging of biological phenomena on the mesoscale (from molecules to tissues) and ophthalmic diagnostics.