Summer Enrichment Highlight: Mohannad Jabrah


In the month of February, Mohannad Jabrah, a senior majoring in Mechanical Engineering at Brown University, was awarded the highly competitive Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) sponsored by the Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences in Rochester, Minnesota . Mohannad was one of 165 students selected in an applicant pool of nearly 2,000 students! The Fellowship provides students the opportunity to conduct biomedical-focused research in Mayo Clinic facilities, offering great ways to build skills and develop research interests for young scientists. During the summer, Mohannad worked on biomechanical research focused on developing and testing new biomaterials-based methods for bone reconstruction applications with Dr. Michael Yaszemski.

He admits that the project was a departure from the microfluidics-focused research he is engaging in at Brown’s Microfluids Diagnostic Lab; however, he was able to make important and relevant connections to his interests of biomechanics, biomaterials, and engineering design for the design of patient-personalized tools for patient care. During his summer enrichment, he applied the skills and lessons he acquired from his physical engineering and life sciences classes he took at Brown. Mohannad confidently contributed to the project in Dr. Yaszemski’s lab, exhibiting great success independently navigating his research tasks of streamlining the polymeric blend and resin making process, optimizing stereolithography for the fabrication of porous scaffolds, and assessing the mechanical and biological assessment of the final scaffolds as candidates for mandibular bone reconstruction. “The opportunity of working at Mayo Clinic's department of orthopedic surgery has taught me the importance of interdisciplinary science, and how more physically-oriented sciences can fit into the medical Research & Development field,” Mohannad expressed.

As Mohannad begins his senior year at Brown, he is looking forward to integrating everything he learned at the Mayo Clinic to his classes at Brown as well as in the Microfluids Diagnostic Lab.  “I look forward to exploring interesting coursework, engaging in a more concrete sense of community, and making the most out of my last fall and spring seasons in Providence,” he stated.  Mohannad has accomplished much as a KGSP student, enhancing his learning experience with worthwhile enrichment opportunities.

“Mohannad has been a consistently strong student with the KGSP and has excelled at developing his own interests and goals. He has performed very well at Brown, and his advisor wishes him all the best as he starts his senior year,” his KGSP Advisor Kristen Olsen stated.