ThinkEnergy Fellows 2016-2017

Sam Crisanti

Sam Crisanti is a fourth year Mechanical Engineering student originally from Windsor, Connecticut. His research interests include renewable energy generation and storage. Currently he is working on a project concerning structural battery systems for Unmanned Air Vehicle applications in conjunction with NASA. When he is not working or in the lab, Sam likes to run and hike as well as play the guitar.

Dane Elliot

Dane Elliott is a third year chemical engineering student also pursuing a minor in business management at Case Western Reserve University. While doing a community service project installing solar panels on homes in rural Botswana, Dane found excitement in clean energy solutions, especially for underdeveloped nations. Dane has a love for traveling and meeting new people, which she would like to pair with her chemical engineering background to work internationally in clean and renewable energy solutions. Dane spent the summer scuba diving in Tenerife, Canary Islands and working on her PADI Divemaster certification. She is now a professional scuba diver. This fall, Dane is on co-op at Lincoln Electric, a leading welding company. On campus, however, she is involved in the CWRU Equestrian Team as the vice-president and is a faithful and ever-present lifeguard at Veale’s Donnell Pool.


Lizzy Kalikasingh

Lizzy Kalikasingh is a third year materials science and engineering student also pursuing a minor in Chinese. Lizzy's love for traveling and nature inspires her to work internationally for renewable energy initiatives. Before coming to Case Western Reserve University, she spent a year studying in Taiwan. This first exposed her to alternative energy technology. Taiwan's integration of sustainable technology left a strong impression of energy conservation, including consideration of both policy and innovation. During her time at Case, she works on energy policy with Professor Matthiesen and conducts research on polymer backsheets of solar panels with Professor Roger French. On campus she also participates in SpartanTHON, Design for America, and works as a campus photographer and videographer. Lizzy is excited to be a GLEI ThinkEnergy Fellow this year and hopes this opportunity gives her a strong foundation in energy. Additionally, she hopes it brings her clsoer to naming all the contries of the world with fellow-Fellow, Marley Praprost.

Chen Liang

Chen was born in Shenyang, China. He earned his Bachelor of Engineering degree with an Outstanding Graduate Award in 2015 from Tianjin University in China. He was selected to be an exchange student at the University of Hong Kong in his junior year. Now Chen is a first year PhD student in Electrical Engineering at the Case School of Engineering. He works with Prof. Philip Feng in micro/nano devices with ultralow-power integrated circuits for self-powering sensors and sensor networks. Chen is particularly interested in developing clean energy harvesters integrated with energy efficient sensor networks for applications in the Internet of Things (IoT), such as smart buildings and wearable devices.

Eliana Ondrejko

Eliana Ondrejko is a sophomore at Case Western Reserve University hailing from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and majoring in International Studies and Marketing. She is a representative for the Weatherhead School of Management in the Undergraduate Student Government. This past year she served on the recently-founded Thwing Advisory Board. In her spare time, she does homework. In her even sparer time, she enjoys singing, playing piano, watching hockey, going to museums, and exploring the Cleveland area. Eliana is interested in the business and policy aspects of energy, specifically the production and marketing of innovative energy products for businesses, governments, and individual consumers. Her experience in the International Baccalaureate Diploma Programme in high school encouraged her to look at problems through a global lens, a skill she plans to incorporate both in her majors and in the fellowship. She looks forward to combining the fields of business and energy to the benefit of both.

Zane Ostoin

Zane Ostoin is a junior at Case Western Reserve University with a double major in Chemical Engineering and Chemistry.  His deep interest in solar energy ranges from the installation of systems to the chemistry of the solar cells. He works in a Macromolecular Physics lab at Case Western Reserve University under Professor Hore, investigating stimuli responsive polymer brushes. He spent the summer working on his own project after being awarded an undergraduate research grant through the University.  Zane is the Malawi Project lead for Humanitarian Design Corps in which a team of students will be installing solar panels on a research shed at the University Farm, and then scaling the project to install it in Malawi at the Kasungu National Park. In his spare time, he enjoys exercise, playing guitar, reading, and hopes to one day read Infinite Jest.

Marley Praprost

Marley Praprost is a fourth year student at Case Western Reserve University studying Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering and minoring in Environmental Studies. In addition, she is pursuing a Master’s in Mechanical Engineering, with a concentration in Fluid and Thermal Sciences, through Case’s BS/MS program. After she graduates, she plans to develop a career in the renewable energy industry, where she can combine her engineering knowledge with her passion for environmental sustainability. Marley currently serves as an ENGR 225 teaching assistant with Dr. Abramson and a grader for the Physics Department. She is excited to be a part of the Great Lakes Energy Institute and to gain exposure to the energy field as a ThinkEnergy Fellow. Outside the classroom, Marley is a member of Case’s Varsity Soccer Team, a frequent flannel-wearer, and a devoted hedgehog owner. 

Dai Shen

Dai Shen graduated Summa Cum Laude from Kenyon College, where he majored in chemistry and minored in both physics and mathematics. In his undergraduate days, his research experience spanned multiple fields, ranging from natural extraction of anti-cancer compounds to pharmaceutical drug delivery. It was after a year-long scholarship from German Academic Exchange Services (DAAD) to study chemical engineering in Cologne, Germany, that Dai realized his passion for solving the impending energy crisis. He hopes to one day become a leader at the forefront of energy research and leave behind a lasting impact that shapes the global energy landscape. Dai is now starting his third year as a Ph.D. student with Dr. Rohan Akolkar in the chemical engineering department. His research focuses on the development of an electrochemical extraction process, in which titanium ore is converted into metallic titanium in high-temperature molten salts. The process aims to produce titanium at low cost and with high energy efficiency. Outside of research, Dai has been a competitive distance runner for almost a decade and continues to train for road running races. He also enjoys reading books in foreign languages.

Ben Whitman

Benjamin Whitman is a third year Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering double major at Case Western Reserve University. His aspirations to become a leader in clean and sustainable energy solutions spur from his love of nature and problem solving. He is excited to be a part of the ThinkEnergy program to approach energy issues holistically and to shape our future energy landscape. On campus, Benjamin is a member of the varsity cross country/track & field teams. He is also vice president of the Slow Food club - an international organization promoting local agriculture for a more sustainable environment. In his spare time, he loves to eat delicious food and would recommend Mitchell's Ice Cream to anyone in the world.