His nomination was submitted by Professor Willis Tacker Jr., another collaborator with Dr. Geddes, who is currently a Professor of Basic Medical Sciences and Biomedical Engineering at Purdue, and a leading expert on defibrillation. Tacker, who received the award in 2007, nominated Fearnot specifically for his creativity and leadership in the medical device industry. Fearnot holds 65 U.S. and foreign patents, among them the first exercise-responsive pacemaker and the first hand-held electrocardiogram - both developed at Purdue.
The Laufman-Greatbatch Prize was first awarded in 1975 and named for Harold Laufman, MD and Wilson Greatbatch, PhD, two of the most renowned leaders and pioneers in the medical device field. The Prize honors an individual or group that has made a significant, singular, and global impact on the advancement of patient care or patient safety through the advancement, development, enhancement, or creation of a specific medical device, instrument, or service. This award is regarded as the pinnacle of all AAMI awards and exemplifies the achievements of Drs. Laufman and Greatbatch. Professor Geddes received the honor in 1987.
Where are you from?
The decision was the result of an application first submitted by Cheng in December last year as an abstract and followed with a full application in March of this year. His project, entitled "A Micelle Approach to Early Nerve Repair after Spinal Cord Injury" was selected by a prestigious committee of reviewers consisting of venture capitalists, industry representatives, clinicians and experts in technology transfer.
The Coulter Translational Research Awards program provides funding for Assistant Professors in established Biomedical Engineering Departments within the United States. The award seeks to support biomedical research that is translational in nature, and to encourage and assist eligible biomedical engineering investigators to establish themselves in academic careers involving translational research. The translational research projects are directed at promising technologies with the goal of progressing toward commercial development and entering clinical practice.
These Projects were each chosen by the Showalter Selection Committee for support through a highly competitive selection process. Proposals for funding from the Ralph W. and Grace M. Showalter Research Trust are first reviewed by an internal selection committee at Purdue. The Committee is appointed on an annual basis by the Associate Vice President for research and is comprised of distinguished faculty representing individual academic units within the Purdue system. The committee then selects the most meritorious pre-proposals for development of full proposals which are then forwarded to the Showalter Trustees. The Showalter Trustees make the final selection of projects to be funded.
Since 1975, Purdue has received research funding through grants made possible from the Ralph W. and Grace M. Showalter Research Trust Fund. The areas of research eligible for funding, as described by the benefactors, are:
- Air and water pollution research
- Research in the field of biochemistry
- Research for the control and prevention of disease
- Research for development of new technologies in food production
- Research in medical and biophysical instrumentation, including the adaptation of the modern computer in the measurement of biological processes, in the collection, recording, analysis, and interpretation of data.
Where are you from?
Born and raised a Boilermaker, I was weaned on Gene Keady basketball, Rube Goldberg projects, and rigorous academic pursuit right here in West Lafayette, Indiana.
What are your hobbies/interests?
Competition: [I enjoy] anything that will test my abilities and challenge me to improve.
What do you hope to do once you graduate?
I am currently enrolled in the 5th year Master of Science program within the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering. I am investigating novel approaches for repair and rehabilitation of damaged cartilage. Upon completion of my Master's degree, I hope to retain employment in a research and development branch of a major medical device company. I would like to eventually return to school and receive a doctorate in biomedical engineering, but I would first like to gain experience in the business world.
Tell me how you spent last summer, specifically about your AxoGen Nerve Regeneration Internship.
I spent the past summer in Gainesville, Florida amongst all the Gators. I worked as a marketing intern for the biomedical startup company AxoGen. AxoGen has developed innovative technology that is able to repair peripheral nerves after injury. As the marketing intern, I was able to see how companies inform and market the specific aspects the engineers’ design. It will be very beneficial in my future endeavors because I now have a complete understanding of the process from design to sell.
Tell me about your current involvement on Purdue’s campus.
My involvement at Purdue University has allowed me to meet a variety of different people, and the chance to make an impact in others’ lives. I am currently involved with a Campus Crusade for Christ Bible study; I am a trip leader for the medical brigade trip to Quito, Ecuador with the Timmy Foundation; and I am an ambassador for the Weldon School of Biomedical Engineering.