ThinkEnergy Fellows 2019-2020

ThinkEnergy Fellows 2019-2020 Final Presentations


Bridget Powers Beggs

Bridget is a second-year student majoring in Materials Science and Engineering with a concentration in Electronic Materials and a minor in Social Justice. Originally from Spokane, Washington, Bridget is excited to participate in the ThinkEnergy Fellowship program to learn about barriers and opportunities in energy policy and the relationships between policy, research, and entrepreneurship. She is especially interested in battery technologies and solutions for improving the electric grid. Currently, she assists in research on All-Solid State Lithium Ion batteries for Dr. Alp Sehirlioglu’s research group. Outside of class she is on the executive board of CWRU’s Humanitarian Design Corps/Engineers Without Borders and on its Malawi team, which is working to install solar panels to provide electricity in Kasungu National Park. Additionally, Bridget participates in CWRU’s Global Ethical Leaders Society, Food Recovery Network, and Undergraduate Materials Society. She also enjoys playing her french horn, board games, and debating politics.

Benjamin Chapman

Ben is a third-year undergraduate student majoring in Chemical Engineering with a double minor in Data Science and Computer Science. Ben was introduced to clean energy projects during his year-long internship at Tesla where he worked to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy. Ben is excited to be a ThinkEnergy Fellow to continue to refine his knowledge of energy policy, technology, and history. He hopes to one day become an industry leader in the adoption of clean energy generation and storage. Outside of class, Ben has played Varsity Baseball, and is a participant in CWRU Greek Life. Ben is an avid baseball fan, and spends much of his free time biking and hiking.

Emmett Donnelley-Power

Emmett is a fourth-year dual majoring in Mechanical Engineering and Aerospace Engineering with a dual minor in Physics and Economics. He is excited to learn about both the business and the technical side of energy and see how these two fields work together in an entrepreneurial context. Emmett is passionate about mechanical design and product design and hopes to develop these skills further. Emmett is involved with robotics and club sports at CWRU.

Nathan Ewell

Nathan is a fourth-year chemical engineering student from Michigan with a coursework focus on electrochemical energy storage. His primary interest is exploring how we can support the implementation of new energy technologies with economic policy. After graduation, Nathan intends to pursue a PhD in chemical engineering, exploring the interface of materials and energy storage. This goal is motivated by several research experiences including the development of electrochemical biosensors to diagnose diseases in a laboratory at CWRU and the National Science Foundation’s Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) that focused on advanced materials at Princeton University and MIT. Outside of class, Nathan is a teaching assistant and is actively involved in Design for America and Sigma Nu Fraternity. He also enjoys video games, traveling, playing music, and spending time with his dogs.

Shreyas Kamath

Shreyas is a fourth-year BS/MS student pursuing a BS in Engineering Physics (with a concentration in applied data science) and MS in Systems & Control Engineering. Shreyas is from Pune, India, and looks forward to participating in the ThinkEnergy fellowship. He hopes to develop energy solutions using data science and gain exposure to the experiential aspect of the field. Shreyas is a research assistant for the EDIFES (Energy Diagnostics Investigator For Efficiency Savings) project that uses data analytics to develop a platform for conducting virtual energy audits. He is also a part of the Civic Engagement Scholars program and volunteers on a weekly basis. For recreation, Shreyas enjoys playing various sports such as table-tennis, soccer, cricket and chess.

Akash Menon

Akash is an MBA candidate at The Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. Prior to pursuing his MBA, he worked in the automotive industry for 3 years as a product engineer, managing manufacturing and engineering feasibility and changes for both internal and customers’ designs through program development, launch, and production. Akash is passionate about new product development and creating a seamless transfer of information between the business and technical departments of an organization. He is excited to join the ThinkEnergy fellowship to get a better understanding of the energy sector in the U.S.A., gain real world experience by working on an energy related project and adding value to the team through his design, business, and program management experience. In his free time, Akash loves to go on road trips, read books, watch movies and create models with his 3D printer.

Oluka Okia

Oluka is a third-year mechanical engineering student from Yellow Springs, Ohio. While building a Stirling engine for his high school senior project, Oluka became fascinated by concentrated solar power systems.  Now, his interests include solar technology, renewable energy storage systems, and nanotechnology.  Oluka participates as a research assistant to Dr. Stephan Hostler at the Energy Innovation Lab in the Department of Mechanical Engineering.  Oluka has a passion for engineering research, design and entrepreneurship, and is thrilled to be a ThinkEnergy Fellow.  He is excited to learn more about the renewable energy industry, network with professionals in the energy sector, and exercise his entrepreneurial skills though team projects.  Aside from academics, Oluka likes to build and fly remote control gliders and produce music beats with his computer.

Dahbin Park

Dahbin is a third-year student dual majoring in Polymer Science and Engineering and Environmental Studies. She is excited to be a ThinkEnergy Fellow. As a fellow, she hopes to learn more about the energy sector as it relates to developing countries as well as super grid systems. Outside of the classroom, Dahbin is a member of Theta Tau professional engineering fraternity, a member of Delta Gamma Fraternity, and coordinator of Students Meeting about Risk and Responsibility Training (SMARRT).

Aparna Paul

Aparna is a third-year student from Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania majoring in Chemical Engineering and minoring in English. Outside of the classroom, Aparna is a part of the Residence Hall Association executive board and Design for America, both of which have taught her collaboration, cooperation, and the human-centered design process, which she hopes to apply to move forward with user-focused solutions for a greener future. She is also interested in the field of energy storage, having worked on megawatt-scale batteries at Lockheed Martin, and wants to explore the possibility of microgrids providing energy to regions of the world that may not have that access. After graduation, Aparna hopes to read many, many more books and keep tackling global issues by applying the principles of chemistry.

Brandon Rudolph

Brandon is a second-year student from Mayfield, Ohio. He is currently pursuing a degree in Data Science and Analytics with a Secondary Major in Economics. He is interested in the economic policy aspect of the energy industry. Brandon is anticipating the chance to learn more about, and possibly contribute to, the data driven approach private and public players are incorporating into their business model. He is excited to discover how Big Data affects the policies in Big Energy. In his personal time, you can find him volunteering at the VA and passionately rallying behind his favorite Cleveland professional baseball team.

Krista Schoonover

Krista is a third-year student double majoring in Chemistry and Math with a minor in German. She has experience in both experimental and computational chemistry working on a project dealing with silyl ketenes, exploring a new route for building polymers. She is currently researching thermoresponsive polymers and combining polymers and nanoparticles. She is excited to learn more about all aspects of the energy industry with the ThinkEnergy program, although her primary focus is in the technological side of clean, sustainable energy. Krista is a passionate member of the Case Symphonic Wind Ensemble, playing the bass clarinet, as well as a devoted leader in campus ministry. In her spare time, she loves playing board and card games, downhill skiing, and spending time with her cats.

Italo Silva

Italo is a third-year PhD student in the Dual Degree program between the Macromolecular Science and Engineering Department at CWRU and the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He has worked for five years as a drilling fluids engineer in oil companies, gaining experience in field operations (on-shore and off-shore), product development and quality control. His research in Dr. Rigoberto Advincula’s group is focused in environmentally friendly additives for drilling fluids, and superhydrophobic coatings for water/oil separation.  On campus, he is part of the Science and Human Rights coalition, and the Volleyball Club. In his spare time, he enjoys hiking, travelling, photography, movies, and spending time with friends.

Rohan Sinha

Rohan is a third-year Electrical Engineering and Economics student from Strongsville, Ohio. His current technical interests lie in improving the efficiency of energy storage and conversion systems of various scales. His passion lies primarily in entrepreneurship. As a freshman, Rohan was a founding member of a biotech concept group. He also spent the last semester as an intern with CWRU LaunchNet where he helped evaluate and guide ventures. Throughout the course of the fellowship, he hopes to continue learning about being a successful entrepreneur. Furthermore, he hopes to learn more in navigating the complex structure of the energy industry’s balance of engineering, business strategy, and policy influence.

Julia Ver Voort

Julia is a fourth-year pre-law student double majoring in Economics and International Studies, with a minor in Chemistry. She is particularly interested in pursuing a career that combines energy policy and foreign policy. She is excited to expand her technical knowledge of the energy sector, and is honored to be part of this year's ThinkEnergy cohort. On campus, she is a member of CWRU's varsity Swimming and Diving team and a member of the pre-law fraternity, Phi Alpha Delta. She also serves as a DAAD Young Ambassador following her time studying abroad in Frankfurt, Germany. In her free time, you can find her traveling, learning languages, and playing guitar.

Ran Wei

Ran is a fourth-year Ph.D. student in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.  From 2014 to 2016, he was a Hardware Testing Engineer at Keithley Instruments, Tektronix.  His research interests include the development of wireless sensors for smart infrastructures, piezoelectric energy harvesting, analog integrated circuit design, and the Internet of Things (IoT).  He has the long term interest in solving global energy challenges using the energy harvesting technologies and IoT.  For his R&D effort on developing self-powering wireless sensors, he won a student entrepreneurial competition award at the 2017 TransTech Energy Business Development Conference (Canonsburg, PA, Oct. 24-25 2017).