Presenting to a Broad Audience: Grace Figlioli

As previously mentioned, the objective of my research project is to analyze tissue engineered free flaps (TEFF) both qualitatively and quantitatively. When presenting to a general audience, I realize that I will have to clarify a variety of different terms due to the fact that many of the words used to explain my project are fairly technical. Many of these terms are not commonly used in everyday vocabulary and are specific to the bioengineering and medical fields. As a brackenridge fellow, my goal is to use the skills I have learned over the past few months to clearly explain my project to a broad audience. I plan to explain multiple definitions before I begin, so that my audience can better understand the context of my project and the importance of these terms. I would like to show the importance of my project, not only to engineers and medical professionals, but also to individuals who are not a part of the STEM field. With millions of reconstructive surgeries being performed every year, the need to restore anatomical features more effectively is an issue that affects millions of people and their loved ones worldwide. I plan to go into detail about the significance of my findings, but in a way that is not over simplified nor overly complicated. So far, I have realized that talking about my research to friends, family, and the other fellows has helped me to better convey my work in a way that is more understandable to people who are not in the field of engineering. During this fellowship, I will continue to keep these interactions in mind as I continue to share my findings with the Brackenridge community. 

In terms of my professional goals, I am aware that the field of engineering is highly collaborative. Due to this reason, I believe it is imperative to always keep in mind a more general audience and think about what these individuals may think of my project. Engineering also involves a great deal of creativity and critical thinking. Oftentimes, engineers are put on a team with individuals who are in different fields such as the arts or graphic design. Because of these kinds of interactions, it is important that every member of the team, regardless of their background, fully understands the importance and the purpose of the project. Therefore, I strongly believe that the Brackenridge community will help me prepare for my future plans as an engineer and help me improve my communication skills.  

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