CBEE welcomes new advisors

Photo of Kimberly Compton and Lindsay Wills
Kimberley Compton, left, and Lindsay Wills are the new faces of undergraduate advising at CBEE.

This spring, the School of Chemical, Biological, and Environmental Engineering welcomed two new advisors to help undergraduate students on their journey to academic success.

Kimberly Compton, the school’s new head advisor, will lead the undergraduate advising team in addition to working directly with students. Compton brings nearly a dozen years of professional experience from Western Oregon University. Compton says she grew into her career there, starting out as a tour guide while still an undergraduate.

Compton earned her bachelor’s degree in health education at Western and began working as an admissions counselor right after graduating in 2006. Motivated by a desire to have more meaningful, long-term interaction with students in helping them to reach their goals, she became an academic advisor in 2012, heading up the pre-nursing advising program. She earned her master’s degree in education from Western in 2016.

Lindsay Wills, academic advisor, is no stranger to Oregon State, having completed a Ph.D. in materials chemistry here in 2017. Since first coming here in 2011, Lindsay has served the university in a variety of different capacities, most recently as program coordinator for the Science Professional Pursuits Program (SP3). Having grown up between Corvallis and Albany, Wills says she hadn’t necessarily planned to stay so close to home, but she’s glad it worked out that way.

“It’s great to work on a campus that really celebrates the beauty of Oregon,” she said.

Both Compton and Wills say they’re eager to start meeting with students and to help them find their way on the path to graduation.

“I think one of the most important things to keep in mind is that we’re not here to be a roadblock to registration,” Compton said. “We encourage students to come in, even when they are not required to. We want to know how students are doing, beyond what classes they’re taking in the next term. We enjoy having those conversations.”

Students can make advising appointments online through the form linked on the CBEE Undergraduate Advising page. Walk-in advising is available daily from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Working engine made from ‘junk’

Chemical engineering junior Anthony Pyka likes to build things. As a member of the SAE Beaver Racing team, Anthony took an elective course to get certified to use the campus machine shop, where he occasionally becomes inspired to create extra projects for himself.

One such project was a working model of an oscillating piston steam engine (see video, above), also known as a “wobbler” design. The materials for this project were sourced entirely from the scrap bin.

Pyka presented the engine as a gift to Philip Harding, Linus Pauling Engineer and associate head for undergraduate programs in the School of Chemical, Biological, and Environmental Engineering.  Harding could not have been more pleased.

“This is a great example of the kind of ‘maker culture’ I want to help build in our school,” Harding said. “It’s tremendously satisfying when students are motivated to create something from scratch, to figure out how something works — and then, when they see it through to completion and everything works? There’s nothing better.”


Kylee Mockler Martens honored with Global Consciousness Award


Photo of Kylee Mockler-Martens and Skip Rochefort
Kylee Mockler Martens is congratulated by Professor Skip Rochefort at the Global Beavers Gala on May 13, 2018.

Chemical engineering senior Kylee Mockler Martens was honored with a 2017-18 Global Consciousness Award.  The award is presented annually to students who are recognized for academic and extracurricular accomplishments that have local and global community impact, connecting their field of study to the rest of the world, and for personal values that exhibit global awareness and involvement.

Mockler Martens will graduate in June with a degree in chemical engineering, the International Degree, and a Spanish minor. Among the highlights of her time at Oregon State, Mockler Martens lists studying abroad in Santander, Spain, acting as conference chair for the Pacific Northwest Regional American Institute of Chemical Engineers Conference, and assisting international students at her campus job at INTO.

Last summer,  Mockler Martens completed a 10-week internship in Concepcion, Chile, where she worked on a project involving plastic pyrolysis, which converts waste plastics into fuel.  She wrote her International Degree thesis on the full-scale implementation of plastic pyrolysis into Chile’s municipal solid waste management system.

Mockler Martens remains passionate about plastics and the environment, and says she hopes to continue working to improve current plastic recycling systems globally.

“I hope to inspire other OSU students to find ways to improve people’s lives around the world,” she said.

The Global Consciousness Award is presented by the Global Beavers Team, whose stated mission is “to create an informed community of globally minded, diversity-driven students regardless of their place of birth.”

Biosensing contact lens named a top early-stage innovation

Illustration of a contact lens with embedded biosensors.
Fully transparent biosensor technology developed at Oregon State University could someday find its way into contact lenses that can monitor blood levels of glucose, therapeutic drugs, or other substances.

New biosensing contact lens technology developed at Oregon State University’s College of Engineering was chosen to receive a 2018 TechConnect National Innovation Award.

The technology, which incorporates an array of fully transparent biosensors within the lens, was developed in the lab of Greg Herman, professor of chemical engineering.

The biosensing contact lens has been envisioned as a noninvasive way for people with diabetes to monitor their blood glucose levels through their tear fluid. However, Herman says the technology could find ready applications in monitoring a variety of other health conditions.

“We can integrate an array of sensors into the lens and also test for other things: stress hormones, uric acid, pressure sensing for glaucoma, and things like that,” Herman said. “We can monitor many compounds in tears – and since the sensor is transparent, it doesn’t obstruct vision.”

The TechConnect Innovation Awards selects the top early-stage innovations from around the world through an industry-review process of the top 20 percent of annually submitted technologies into the TechConnect World Conference.  Rankings are based on the potential positive impact the submitted technology will have on a specific industry sector.