March 2009

Geddes Named First Recipient of Nelson Award
Governor Mitch Daniels has honored Dr. Leslie A. Geddes, naming him the first recipient of the Dr. Phillip E. Nelson Innovation Award for his groundbreaking accomplishments in medical research and treatments. The award, created it in 2007 to recognize outstanding Hoosier scientists, is named in honor of Dr. Phillip E. Nelson, a Purdue University scientist awarded the 2007 World Food Prize for his revolutionary achievements in the field of food processing.


Paper selected by Faculty of 1000 Biology
A paper on the critical role of acrolein in spinal cord injuries co-authored by Riyi Shi has been selected by the Faculty of 1000 Biology as one of the most interesting papers in current biology.


Weldon Researchers Receive 5 of 14 ISCBI Grants
Five of the first research grants issued by the Indiana Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Board have been awarded to faculty members at the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering. Ji-Xin Cheng, Alyssa Panitch, Jenna Rickus, Riyi Shi, and Tom Talavage were selected from 32 proposals submitted for consideration.

One of the main purposes of the fund is to support research related to the treatment and cure of spinal cord and brain injuries, including acute management, medical complications, rehabilitative techniques and neural recovery.  The grants are worth $120,000 each over the course of two years. Although collaborations are encouraged, the research must all be done in Indiana.

Please join us in congratulating them on being selected in this initial round. 

Spotlight on the Weldon Undergraduate Internship Program
The student internship is a structured learning experience, not just a summer job. It is an educational opportunity meant to provide a richer educational foundation, stimulate independent critical thinking, facilitate the process of personal development, and help clarify the career goals & interests of the Weldon School's Biomedical Engineering students.
Program sponsors play an important role in shaping the next generation of Purdue Engineers. Recently, our students have been placed in meaningful experiences at key industry partners including, but not limited to:
  • AxoGen; Alachua, FL
  • Bard Access Systems; Salt Lake City, UT
  • Fort Wayne Metals; Fort Wayne, IN
  • Hill-Rom; Batesville, IN
  • Cook Group’s MED Institute; West Lafayette, IN
  • Ethicon Endo-Surgery; Cincinatti, OH
  • Hollister, Inc.; Libertyville, IL     

Because of the Weldon School’s integrated curriculum and intense laboratory courses, internship program sponsors gain an engineering student who can integrate contributions from multiple disciplines to solve open-ended engineering challenges with biological or medical relevance.

Weldon students who apply to the internship program are screened to be intern candidates by an internal faculty and staff committee.  Candidates are then matched to sponsor companies for interviews based upon student’s interests, needs of the company, and available positions.  At the end of the interview phase, sponsors identify their top candidates and students rank their preferred placement.  After final matching is completed, offers are extended, and sponsors will interact directly with interns to finalize details of employment.  Meanwhile, during the spring semester, students are prepared for their internships through a seminar series focused on professional conduct, project management, and other pertinent issues. 

Students not only gain important real-world skills and the experience that will give them an edge as they undertake a job search, but some also gain full-time employment offers, and a few receive graduate educational support from their intern sponsor.

Interested in learning more?  If you envision a Weldon intern working with your company, please let us know. There is still time to arrange for summer 2009 interns. We are committed to working closely with our corporate partners to meet their needs. We would be happy to speak with or visit you in order to share more detailed information about the summer internship program and its advantages. 

Please contact Gina Haile today to begin the process of securing a Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering Summer Intern.  
As always, we welcome you to campus to celebrate the close of a decorated decade in our history and to become a part of the next decade as we continue to advance both higher education and the medical device field. If you are interested in learning more about the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering, or have stories you would like to share, please contact Julia Colby, our Manager of Development Operations, at We would like to learn about you, answer your questions, and schedule a visit.