Dr. Delphine Dean

College of Engineering, Computing and Applied Sciences

Area of Research:
Nano- to micro-scale characterization of biological tissues

305 Rhodes Annex
Dr. Delphine Dean

Proposed role for the Scholar as an undergraduate researcher in the Mentor's lab.
Undergraduates in my lab work on both research and design projects, and the Beckman Scholar will follow this model. The Beckman Scholar will be paired with other underclassmen and upperclassmen students on small teams to work on projects (usually 3 students per large project). This approach allows the upperclassmen the opportunity to mentor the younger students. In addition, the students on the small teams tend to be more effective on projects because of their differing class schedules and course load (e.g., they don't have exams all at the same time and so can cover for each other). I strive to have the students do more than just "work" on the projects. In my lab, the Beckman Scholar will have the opportunity to lead and design their own projects. Upon joining my lab, the Scholar will write up a short proposal to explain their project goal. He/she will present this idea to the research group at the beginning of the project period, as well as "pitch" new ideas and concepts throughout each semester. The Scholar will also present weekly results/progress and planned next steps along with all other students in the lab group.

Frequency and nature of the planned interactions between the Scholar and Mentor.
I will lead a one hour group meeting with the Beckman Scholar and his/her project team once a week. The Scholar and team will present their current results, discuss issues, and go over the literature review. In addition, I will meet with the Beckman Scholar individually for a set 30-min. time slot every week. At these meetings, we will discuss specific project concerns as well as professional development and career goals.

Specific plans the Mentor will employ.
Typically, students stay in my lab for at least three semesters, with most staying on in the lab for more than two years. I will help the Beckman Scholar, like all of my undergraduate students, prepare for a successful career after college. I will specifically help prepare the Scholar for graduate school, fellowship opportunities (NSF, DOD, etc.), and job applications. We will plan for the application submission timelines and work together on personal statements and all parts of application process. In addition, I will take the Beckman Scholar to professional conferences and meetings along with my other undergraduate mentees. These opportunities will help the Scholar build presentation skills, grow their professional networks, and learn about cutting-edge findings and research. Students on design projects also participate in university and external pitch and design competitions. I will help the Scholar apply to small research grants and design awards, as applicable. The Scholar will work with students on the other research teams to gain feedback on applications, proposals, and presentation.

Active undergraduate researchers in Mentor's lab. 47

Total number of UGRS mentored to date: 150

Dr. Delphine Dean’s lab leads a wide range of studies focused on understanding mechanics and interactions of biological systems across length scales. Her expertise is in nano- to micro-scale characterization of biological tissues including experimental techniques such as atomic force microscopy and mathematical modeling such as finite element analysis. Students in her lab work on a variety of projects including investigating the use of dental pulp stem cells for help with dental tissue regeneration, developing mathematical models to predict of cardiovascular cell mechanics, understanding the effect radiation on cells and tissues, and developing medical technology and sensors for the developing countries.