Sean Kirkpatrick, chair of biomedical engineering, has been named a Fellow of SPIE, the international society for optics and photonics. He is one of 69 new Fellows announced by SPIE on Monday, March 4.
Kirkpatrick was chosen for his achievements in theory and application of laser speckle in biomedical fields. In a news release announcing the new Fellows, SPIE said: ” Kirkpatrick has made valuable contributions to research on the interface between the fields of continuum mechanics, tissue mechanics and optics. His primary accomplishments have been in developing both the theoretical basis and practical applications of laser speckle techniques for biomedical imaging and diagnostics. He pioneered the use of laser speckle for understanding soft tissue mechanics and was one of the founders of the field of optical elastography.”
Biomedical engineers need to know engineering inside out. How knowledgeable do they need to be about biological sciences? They need to know at least as much about that fast-moving field too. The biomedical device and biotech industries are evolving so rapidly that it takes the latest engineering skills and a thorough understanding of cutting-edge cell and molecular biology and genetics to meet the demands of biomedical engineering.
That’s what industry leaders told Sean Kirkpatrick when Michigan Technological University’s chair of biomedical engineering talked with them about how Michigan Tech could better meet their needs. And Kirkpatrick listened.
Now he’s rolling out a new biomedical engineering curriculum designed to produce the specialists that the industry needs.
“Biomedical engineers are not generalists,” Kirkpatrick explains. They are rigorously trained engineers who also understand the explosion of new knowledge in the biological sciences and its implications for engineering health-related devices and materials. “