Washington University in St Louis, London School of Economics, University of Oxford
BS in Computer Science, BA in Mathematics, Msc in Applicable Mathematics
software engineer and student
University of Oxford
Favourite thing to do in research: Maths! I love using mathematics to solve real world problems.
I am a second year PhD student at Oxford in engineering and computer science.
I am a second year PhD student at Oxford in engineering and computer science. I am originally from the USA. I grew up in Philadelphia, and I move to the UK two years ago. I love to read fantasy books and I used to be a cheerleader.
I study competitive multi-robot systems
I look at circumstances where multiple robots have to interact with each other, but they might not be able to (or want to) talk to each other.
In particular, I looking at the planning stage of robotics. That means I tell the robot what location it should try to get to next so that it can successfully do everything it needs to get done.
For example, if a grocery store has hired one robot to clean up messes and another robot to scan stock on the shelves, the two robots might be owned by different companies and struggle to interact. I design systems to make sure they don’t run into each other.
My Typical Day
I spend four days a week at a desk doing maths and coding, but one day a week playing with robots!
Most days, I spend the morning reading papers written by my colleagues . In the afternoon I either do maths to prove that my systems work the way they are supposed to, or write code to show that the robots do what I expect in simulation. Every once in a while, I get to take robots out for “field trial” to show that my systems will work in the real world.
What I'd do with the money
Demo days for women and non-binary students
I would love to bring one of our robots into local Oxford schools to run an event specifically for women and non-binary students. The event would allow students to interact directly with our robot Betty and would show them how we can teach our robots to move around a space all by themselves, without running into stationary objects and moving people.
Growing up, I never liked car engines, Minecraft or other activities that feed into robotics research. In fact, I did not know robotics was a field that would interest me until I (somewhat accidentally) ended up studying it! I think it is important to share the diverse backgrounds and interests that can lead to a career in robotics.
Here’s a picture of me and our robot Betty interacting with some very young children at a recent engagement event.
What or who inspired you to become a researcher?
My 11th grade maths teacher
What was your favourite subject at school?
mathematics and social studies
What did you want to be after you left school?
I had no clue what I wanted to do! I thought I wanted to be a teacher, a writer, a banker, a talk show host, and so many more!
Were you ever in trouble at school?
If you weren't a researcher, what would you be?
Who is your favourite singer or band?
The Jonas Brothers
What's your favourite food?
Anything with chocolate!