My name is Lisa Richards and I graduated in 2008 with a BSE in Biomedical Engineering. I spent an extra year at Duke as an Associate in Research in Dr. Nimmi Ramanujam's Tissue Optical Spectroscopy lab in the BME department. This experience, plus the Pratt Research Fellowship (also in the Ramanujam lab), taught me a lot about biomedical research, especially for clinical applications. In 2009, I started as a graduate student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin. I am in Dr. Andrew Dunn's Functional Optical Imaging lab and my project is to optimize an optical imaging method for intraoperative use, specifically during neurosurgery. The optical imaging method we are using is called laser speckle contrast imaging (LSCI) and can be used to monitor blood flow in real-time. We have implemented a traditional LSCI setup into a neurosurgical microscope to study the impact of using LSCI as an intraoperative tool for monitoring of blood flow.
I know that I wouldn't be where I am today without the Baldwin Scholars program. All the women in the program, both the scholars and the mentors, have been a fantastic support network and have inspired me to be an independent and confident woman in my field. The Baldwin women bring back many cherished memories and will always be my Duke family.