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2007 Mainland Intern Profiles

Abubakarr Bah
Valerie Bick
Brice Cannon
Marvin Cruz
Mario Delgadillo-Lariz
Darwin Fernandez
Heather Kaluna
Samelia Okpodu
Juan Saucedo
Andrew Williams

Abubakarr Bah, Santa Rosa Junior College
CfAO Site for Internship:Laboratory for Adaptive Optics, University of California, Santa Cruz
Project: Characterizing Lenslet Arrays for the Keck Adaptive Optics System (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Renate Kupke
Advisor:  Don Gavel

Abubakarr Bah is originally from Freetown, Sierra Leone, and emigrated to the United States in fall of 2004. He is a first generation college student and currently a sophomore at Santa Rosa Junior College, in Santa Rosa, CA. He is currently working as a math tutor in the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA) Program at Santa Rosa Junior College.  Abubakarr plans to attend the University of California in the fall of 2007 to earn a B.S. degree in mechanical engineering.  After earning his degree, Abubakarr plans to attend graduate school and pursue a career in aeronautical engineering and space science. (Top)

Valerie Bick, CalPoly - San Luis Obispo
CfAO Site for Internship: Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics, University of California, Santa Cruz
Project: Dwarf Galaxies and Galaxy Formation (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor and Advisor: Constance Rockosi

Valerie Bick was born and raised in Martinez, California. She is the youngest of three children. Valerie is a third year Math major at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She is a member of the Cal Poly Mathematics Club and the KME Math Honor Society. She will pursue a graduate degree in Applied Mathematics after earning her B.S. degree. Valerie also enjoys soccer and racquetball. (Top)

Brice Cannon, Norfolk State University
CfAO Site for Internship: Lawrence Livermore National Labs
Project: Active Control of Aberrations for the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope (LSST) (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Stacie Hvisc
Advisor: Scot Olivier

Brice M. Cannon is a first generation college student who is currently a rising junior Optical Engineering and Mathematics Dual B.S. student at Norfolk State University. He is a recipient of the DNIMAS full scholarship and is currently the sophomore class representative for the DNIMAS Student Association. He is also a spring 2007 inductee of Beta Kappa Chi National Scientific Honor Society. He plans to pursue a doctoral degree in optical physics or biomedical engineering with a concentration in imaging after he completes his B.S. (Top)

Marvin Cruz, University of California, Santa Cruz
CfAO Site for Internship:Baskin School of Engineering, University of California, Santa Cruz
Project: Testing an Inkjet-Based Printer for Use in Fabricating MEMS Devices (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Oscar Azucena
Advisor: Joel Kubby

Marvin Cruz is a 3rd year student attending UC Santa Cruz. Originally from Salinas, California, he is pursuing a B.S. in electrical engineering and a minor in computer engineering. Marvin is also an active member of the School of Engineering Honor Society and is affiliated with the campus’s Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) student branch. His previous work experience at UCSC includes working as a lab instructor for an assembly language course and as a grader for a hardware logic design course. This is his 2nd time working with the CfAO (the first being in COSMOS’ back in 2001) and he is happy to have the opportunity to be working with them again. (Top)

Mario Delgadillo-Lariz, University of California, Santa Cruz
CfAO Site for Internship: Lawrence Livermore National Labs
Project: Gemini Planet Imager: Building and Characterizing a Membrane Mirror (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Kevin Baker
Advisor: Scot Olivier

Mario Delgadillo-Lariz was born in Aguascalientes, Mexico and raised in Santa Cruz, California. He attended Cabrillo College and worked as a math and science tutor for the Mathematics Engineering Science Achievement (MESA) program. Mario will be transferring to San Jose State University in Fall 2007 and will be working towards a degree in electrical engineering. (Top)

Darwin Fernandez, Hartnell Community College
CfAO Site for Internship:Baskin School of Engineering, University of California, Santa Cruz
Project: Characterization of Large-Stroke MEMS Actuators for Adaptive Optics (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Bautista Fernández
Advisor: Joel Kubby

Darwin Fernandez is currently finishing his final semester at Hartnell Community College and is planning to transfer to a University in California to study electrical engineering. This is Darwin’s second summer as an intern for the CfAO and he is excited to continue research at UC Santa Cruz.  Darwin is actively involved in the Hartnell Chapter of the Society of Physics Students and in the MESA Rocketry and Robotics Club. He works at the Hartnell College Math Lab and with the MESA program as a mathematics and physics tutor. (Top)

Heather Kaluna, University of Hawai'i at Hilo
CfAO Site for Internship:Department of Astronomy & Astrophysics, University of California, Santa Cruz
Project: Serendipity in the DEEP Survey (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: David Rosario
Advisor: Puragra GuhaThakurta

Heather Kaluna was born and raised on the Big Island of Hawai'i.  She is currently a junior pursuing degrees in Astronomy and Mathematics at the University of Hawai'i at Hilo.  Heather is the vice president of the University Astrophysics Club as well as the president of the Ohana of Future Mathematics and Science Teachers.  Her future goals are to obtain a PhD and work as a professor at a university, where she can both teach and perform research. (Top)

Samelia Okpodu, Norfolk State University
CfAO Site for Internship: Department of Ophthalmology & Vision Science, University of California, Davis
Project: Improved Image Quality in AO-OCT Through System Characterization (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Julia W. Evans
Advisor: John S. Werner
Additional Collaborators: Robert J. Zawadzki, Steve Jones, Scot S. Olivier

Samelia Okpodu is a senior in the Optical Engineering program with a minor in Mathematics at Norfolk State University. Samelia is currently a Dozoretz National Institute for Mathematics and Applied Sciences (DNIMAS) scholarship recipient and the secretary for DNIMAS Student Association. Samelia is actively involved in the National Society of Black Engineers where she currently serves as president. She is also a spring 2007 Beta Kappa Chi Scientific Honor Society inductee. Samelia has participated in various research internships and REU’s in engineering throughout her years at Norfolk State University. Post-graduation she plans to pursue a doctorate in Biomedical Engineering. (Top)

Juan Saucedo, Bakersfield College
CfAO Site for Internship:School of Optometry, University of California, Berkeley
Project: Comfortable and Accurate Solutions for High-Resolution Retinal Imaging (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Advisor and Mentor: Austin Roorda

Juan Saucedo is a Bioengineering major at Bakersfield College. Juan is a volunteer for one of the local hospitals in Bakersfield. He is also a mathematics tutor for MESA (Math Engineering Science Achievement), and has helped tutor after school programs in his local community. He plans on earning a doctoral degree in nanoengineering, and plans to perform research in nanomedicine. (Top)

Andrew Williams, Xavier University of Louisiana
CfAO Site for Internship: University of Rochester
Project: Ophthalmic Instruments and Ex Vivo Retinal Pigment Epithelium Autofluorescence (Abstract, Presentation, Poster)
Mentor: Jennifer Hunter
Advisor: David Williams

Andrew is a biology premed student from Waldorf, MD.  He currently attends Xavier University of Louisiana and hopes to attend optometry school soon there after his undergraduate study at Xavier.  He is a member of the Howard Hughes Biomedical Honor Corp as well as the Alpha Kappa Mu National Honor Society.  He is positive that the research he conducts for the Center for Adaptive Optics will further help him to pursue his career goals in attaining his PhD and becoming an ophthalmologist. (Top)

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Last Modified: Aug 28, 2007 

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