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The Joint Department of Biomedical and Health Sciences Engineering Student Ambassadors Program promotes leadership and communication skills by offering students the opportunity to represent the department at a variety of academic and social events held throughout the academic year. From the University Open House and Admittance days, to guided tours, the ambassadors serve as a personal interface with prospective students and guests of the department. Prospective students and their parents are welcome to contact an ambassador by clicking on his or her email link below.

Meet Your Ambassador

Kristy Reed, Lead Ambassador,, Class of 2019

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Kristy” collapse_text=”Show Less about Kristy” ] Hometown:  Charlotte, NC

High School: Providence High School

What I plan to do after graduation:  to work in industry for a few years to either pursue higher education in engineering or business.

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: The biomedical engineering field is highly dynamic and incorporates team work, creativity, and problem solving, all of which are workplace attributes that I value and enjoy. It’s a great area of study for those who enjoy a challenge and want to make a significant impact on someone’s life!  

  • UNC Club Cross Country
  • Founding President of Girls Engineering Change (2015-2017)
  • APPLES Bryan Fellowship Co-Chair
  • Studio Art Minor

Awards & Honors:

  • UNC Honors College
  • i4 Competition Participant and $500 i4 Grant Recipient (2015-2016)
  • Robert E. Bryan Social Innovation Fellow (2016)


Carolyn Liu, Class of 2018

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Carolyn” collapse_text=”Show Less about Carolyn” ] Hometown:  Bar Harbor, Maine

High School: Great Valley High School, Malvern PA

What I plan to do after graduation: Travel the world for a while! And then stick around the RTP area for a potential job before getting a Masters or PhD.

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: I am excited about the broad range of subjects we can work in because BME is such a large umbrella. BME at UNC especially involves being in a great community with genuine support, and though I would prefer to stick around the area after graduation, there also wouldn’t be any difficulty leaving to work or study elsewhere with this degree. 


  • President of Chinese Undergraduate Students Association

  • Co-president of UNC Carolina Women in Physics

  • Research Assistant at Experimental Neuroimaging Laboratory (Shih Lab)

  • Volunteer for Independent Animal Rescue Inc.

Awards & Honors:

  • Academic Dean’s List

  • Summer Undergraduate Research Fellowship (SURF) recipient 2017


Joanna Mcdonald jlm12@live.unc.eduClass of 2020

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Joanna” collapse_text=”Show Less about Joanna” ] Hometown:  Cary, North Carolina

High School: Green Hope High School

What I plan to do after graduation: As of right now planning to go into industry, but this could change over the next couple  years!

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: I love biomedical engineering because I get to apply what I learn in all of my STEM classes to hands on design projects.  I think its amazing to learn skills so directly applicable to making a difference in the medical field.  From my experience, UNC BME is particularly special because the faculty is personally invested in your success and will make time for students when they need it. 


    • President/Founder of Engineering World Health UNC Chapter
    • Vice President of Biomedical Engineering Club
    • Communications Team of the Helping Hand Project
    • Member of Be the Match on Campus
  • Member of Project Sunshine

Other Interests:

    • Dogs
    • Travel
  • New England (Go Pats)


Keshav Patel, Class of 2019

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Keshav” collapse_text=”Show Less about Keshav” ] Hometown: Cary, NC

High School: NC School of Science and Mathematics

What I plan to do after graduation: Attend graduate school; currently looking at MD/PhD and PhD programs

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: I have interests in a wide range of STEM subjects, and BME is a great way to study them while learning how to combine these fields in the context of medicine. Additionally, I have found that the critical thinking skills I have developed in classes and projects have helped me advance both in research and in a startup.


    • Research Assistant and Mentor in Applied Mathematics Dept.
    • Volunteer in Math Help Center
    • Volunteer in UNC Hospitals Burn Center ICU
    • Golf
  • Member of Hindu YUVA


    • Chancellor’s Science Scholar
    • Honors Carolina
  • Dean’s List


Alyssa Burke,  Class of 2019

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Alyssa” collapse_text=”Show Less about Alyssa” ] Hometown: Suffern, NY

High School: Suffern High School

What I plan to do after graduation:  I plan to work in industry and possibly receive my masters in Prosthetics and Orthotics.

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: I love BME because it has the ability to help thousands of lives and constantly challenges me to think differently. The skills I learn in the classroom can be applied to all parts of my life.  Additionally, I love doing more hands-on work and how close and friendly everyone is in the major.


  • UNC Club Swimming
  • Girls Engineering Change
  • Research at the Center for Environmental Medicine, Asthma, and Lung Biology

Awards & Honors:

  • Dean’s List
  • BME Undergraduate Researcher of the Month


Anup Rao, Class of 2019

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Anup” collapse_text=”Show Less about Anup” ] Hometown: Morrisville, NC

High School: Green Hope High School 

What I plan to do after graduation: I plan to continue working in industry to gain experience in the several aspects of medical devices. In the future, I am also considering returning to school to receive my masters degree in Biomedical Engineering. 

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: I knew BME was the right field for me because of my passion for STEM. BME is a unique major that allows you to apply the concepts you learn in the classroom to real life projects designed to improve the current health care field. The BME faculty at UNC are highly invested in our development as engineers and are second to none. I love BME because it allows me to think critically on the ways I can use my skills to come up with new ideas to directly improve the lives of people around us. 


    • Engineering Technician at Yukon Medical, LLC
    • Project Lead, BME Devices Club 
    • Technology Admin, Splash UNC
  • Cricket 


  • Academic Dean’s List


Mahdi Elabdellaoui, class of 2020

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Mahdi” collapse_text=”Show Less about Mahdi” ]Hometown: Jamestown, NC

High School: The Early College at Guilford College, Greensboro, NC

What I plan to do after graduation: Currently, I see myself gaining experience in industry researching regenerative medicine or rehabilitation engineering before potentially returning to school to pursue a Master’s.

Why I love Biomedical Engineering: The BME department has allowed me to find that small, family-like feeling and personalized attention that many students can miss out on at such a large university like UNC. As someone who thrives on teamwork and enjoys being tasked with problems that require creative solutions, BME has equipped and pushed me to think outside the box to find answers to many of the healthcare issues that burden countless people today. This program is for students, like myself, who want to make a tangible impact on improving the quality of life for people everywhere.


    • Studying plant genetics as a research technician in the Dangl Lab in the Biology Department
    • Manager of UNC’s Varsity Men’s Soccer team
    • Member of UNC’s Muslim Student Association
    • French minor

Awards & Honors:

    • Academic Dean’s List
    • Quaker Chemical Co. Foundation Merit-Based Scholarship


Linda Henry, Class of 2020

[bg_collapse view=”link-list” color=”#00000″ icon=”arrow” expand_text=”Show More about Linda” collapse_text=”Show Less about Linda” ]Hometown: Charlotte, NC

What I plan to do after graduation: Although I am still considering going to med school, I am currently leaning more towards going into industry to gain some experience and then most likely attending graduate school later on.

Why I love Biomedical Engineering:  I love BME because it combines my passion for STEM with hands-on design and creative problem solving. I love seeing how the theoretical concepts I’ve learned in classes like chemistry, biology, and physics can be applied to solve real issues in medicine. I also love the community within the major, since with an emphasis on collaboration, you get to know your peers and professors very well. As someone with a passion for service and helping others, it is a great major because the projects that you create help improve the lives of people around you.


    • Vice President of Engineering World Health
    • Alpha Phi Omega (co-ed service fraternity)
    • Treasurer of Carolina Conservation Technology
    • Buckley Public Service Scholars
    • RUF
  • German minor


    • Academic Dean’s List
  • Honors Carolina