by Emily Sugarman
Published September 13, 2017
Out of twenty-five UB students named WNY Prosperity Fellows for 2017-2018, eleven are students at UB’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS).
The fellowships, made possible by the generous Prentice Family Foundation, are awarded to driven undergraduate and graduate students with an entrepreneurial spirit who plan to better Western New York with their specific work and passions.
The fact that a major portion of Prosperity fellows are engineering students demonstrates the strength and ambition of SEAS students and its community’s emphasis on valuable, benevolent impact.
As part of the fellowship, students are awarded $25,000 in scholarship for an academic year. The program aids fellows in acquiring paid, credit-bearing internships that are beneficial towards their career goals and includes productive mentorship from accomplished leaders in their fields.
Additionally, fellows receive $1,000 to enhance their experience in working towards professional and personal goals. The fellows also receive complimentary membership to attend meetings and trainings sponsored by the Buffalo Niagara Partnership 360 program, Emerging Business Leaders and the WNY Venture Association.
“The Prosperity Fellows are among the best and the brightest students UB has to offer. With their entrepreneurial spirit and intellectual curiosity, these young men and women will be integral to Western New York’s economic future and success,” said A. Scott Weber, UB’s vice president for student life. “UB is proud to help provide them with a unique and transformational experience that connects them with leaders from the region’s nonprofit and business sectors.”
When the fellows began the program in May, they connected with each other and Prosperity Fellowship alumni during speed networking sessions, attended presentations from respected leaders of local nonprofits, and toured Silo City with owner Rick Smith, who is president of Rigidized Metals.
As the fellows continue to excel in their studies and research at UB as well as their internships, the Prosperity Fellowship program will encourage the students to focus their creativity and ambition on improving Western New York in their own special way.
The eleven engineering students selected for this prestigious fellowship are making incredible feats that speak to how hard they work, how well they work with others, and how they transform their ideas into actions.
The following students inspire their peers to think innovatively and believe they can make an important difference in Western New York and beyond. Find out more about each exceptional student.
Brett Bosinski is pursuing an electrical engineering degree at UB. As a member of the Sensors and MicroActuators Learning Lab (SMALL) in the Department of Electrical Engineering, Bosinski is researching microfluidics and ultrasound for health care applications. He has been a part of the Acker Scholars program at UB, MORE House, and Science is Elementary at Westminster Charter School. Bosinski hopes to take his research to the next level and commercialize it. He plans to contribute to the growth of the growing medical device field in Western New York through innovation in his own research to create technology that could revolutionize the field.
Born and raised in Buffalo, Mike Brown is a rising junior majoring in political science and computer science, with a minor in environmental design. He has a passion for public service and an interest in using technology to innovate within the public and non-profit sectors to promote civic engagement and make services more efficient and accessible. He and teammate Morgan Sansbury created WaterWatcher, a text message-based water quality data system that was a finalist in the Erie Hack competition. As an Urban Fellow in the City of Buffalo, Brown is helping implement Buffalo’s open data policy, organizing a civic hackathon, and facilitating community engagement efforts around data. In his future, Mike plans to pursue a master’s degree in public administration and looks forward to dedicating his career to serving the Buffalo community.
Daniel Buckmaster is an undergraduate in mechanical and aerospace engineer who plans to continue his studies in engineering by attending graduate school UB. He is currently a product engineer at Moog’s Commercial Aircraft Group in East Aurora, gaining experience working at an industry-leading company. Buckmaster is an Honors Scholar, as well as a teaching assistant for the School of Engineering and Applied Sciences’ First Year Initiative. In the startup community, he works as a development engineer at 3AM Innovations out of Z80 Labs. He also works as a design consultant for UB's Blackstone LaunchPad. Although just moving to the area in 2014, he has found a true home in Western New York and plans to stay in the region to improve its economic and social outlook.
As a native of Buffalo, Mary Canty graduated with her bachelor’s degree in biomedical engineering from UB in May 2014. In 2014, she was awarded the Department of Biomedical Engineering Presidential Fellowship. She is currently pursuing her PhD in the UB Orthopaedics Research Laboratory, with a focus on periprosthetic joint infection. Her research is centered on voltage-controlled electrical stimulation of titanium implants for the prevention of orthopaedic infections. In June 2015, Canty presented her research at the third Stevens Conference on Bacteria-Material Interactions in Hoboken, New Jersey. In addition to spending time on research, Canty is a math tutor for local high school students, and serves as a volunteer at the Westminster Charter School for their Science is Elementary program. Following graduation, Canty intends to stay in WNY and take advantage of the flourishing medical technology community in downtown Buffalo.
Originally from Alfred, New York, Madeleine Dewey is a rising senior working toward a bachelor’s in environmental engineering at UB. Her passion is infusing sustainability education and practice in every aspect of life, both in the academic and business worlds with the end goal of creating a more resilient and sustainable Western New York. Dewey pursues this aim through her work on campus and in the community. She works closely with many environmental organizations on campus, including UB Sustainability and Students for Sustainability Council, and is the newly elected president of UB's chapter of Engineers for a Sustainable World. For her dedicated sustainability efforts on campus, she has been recognized as an Education and Leadership Fellow in Sustainability (ELFS). Off campus, Dewey has interned with the Western New York Sustainable Business Roundtable, and Triad Recycling and Energy Corp., a small solid waste management business located in Tonawanda. This summer, she plans to intern with Wendel Companies. After graduation, she intends to use her skills as an environmental engineer to implement solutions to environmental challenges in the region, while always keeping sustainability a top priority.
Nicholas Eadie is a registered patent agent with the law firm of Simpson& Simpson, PLLC, and a co-founder and vice president of engineering and intellectual property at La Salle Concepts. He graduated cum laude with his bachelor’s in mechanical engineering from UB and his bachelor’s in physics from Canisius College. He is currently pursuing his JD and MS in mechanical engineering at UB. His law school concentration focuses on intellectual property and startup law, and he is currently the submissions editor of the Buffalo Intellectual Property Law Journal. Additionally, as a member of UB’s Sensor and MicroActuators Learning Lab (SMALL), Eadie’s research includes the development of three-dimensional wax-based microfluidic devices using additive manufacturing techniques, and the optimization of such methods. He mentors the FIRST Robotics Team at St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute and the VEX Robotics Team at Our Lady of Black Rock Elementary School. He is also working on developing a summer curriculum for elementary school children focusing on computer coding and robotics.
Isabel Hall is a rising junior environmental engineering student whose decision to pursue a degree in this field was fueled by her desire to address social issues, as well as her passion to protect the environment and encourage sustainability practices. She conducts research alongside department faculty, engages in sustainability initiatives as an Education and Leadership Fellow in Sustainability, and has experience working with Blackstone LaunchPad and UB’s Office of Sustainability Office, for which she served as a student assistant for the Erie Hack competition. Hall developed the program “Inspiring Future Engineers” to instill academic confidence in middle school students. The program was launched in 2016 as a five-day workshop consisting of STEM-based activities and lessons. She plans to expand “Inspiring Future Engineers” into a city-wide initiative that offers a scholarship program and a “just girls” workshop. Her ultimate goal is to create a resilient Western New York by encouraging youth to pursue and adhere to their STEM-interests. She plans to use her degree to address social problems pertaining to the environment — guided by the belief that creating a more sustainable, environmentally resilient Western New York not only aids in the economic development of Buffalo, but creates a cleaner, safer environment for its residents.
Richard Izzo is a Western New York native who graduated magna cum laude from UB in May 2015 with bachelor’s degrees in biomedical engineering and chemistry. He is currently pursuing his PhD in biomedical engineering at UB, specializing in 3-D printing in health care, under the advisement of Ciprian Ionita, PhD. In this capacity, he works collaboratively as a research associate at the Jacobs Institute, where he was formerly an intern. As an undergraduate, Izzo worked as a researcher in UB’s Lovell Nanomedicine Laboratory and under Renee Reynolds, MD, in his senior year to understand pediatric neurological conditions. He served as first author on one journal article and co-author on three more. He has also given presentations at five conferences, presented two webinars, and was a featured speaker at the Virtual 3D Printing in Medicine Summit. In addition to his research work, Izzo assists in the Brain Bootcamp program to teach schoolchildren about heart attack and stroke in a fun and interactive way. He was an active rower, and head coach of the St. Joseph’s Collegiate Institute freshman crew program for two years.
A Grand Island native, Brentyn Mendel is an Honors College student pursuing a bachelor of science degree in biomedical engineering. He intends to pursue a master’s in mechanical engineering with a focus in biomechanical devices. In order to improve his understanding of business practices, Mendel also intends to earn his MBA. He is an active member of the Grand Island Fire Company, and has been certified as an interior firefighter and an emergency medical technician. While volunteering in this capacity, Mendel was able to identify many deficiencies in the current pre-hospital care system that he believes could be improved. He aims to correct the deficiencies by starting his own company that will specifically address problems that first responders face on a daily basis in order to improve the care they provide.
Emmanuel Nsengiyumva came to Buffalo from a Congolese refugee camp in Rwanda in 2010. He is a master’s degree candidate in the UB Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering, having earned his BS in chemical engineering in 2016. As an undergraduate student, Nsengiyumva analyzed household products and examined their mechanical properties. He also reviewed the applications of surfactants and polymers in personal care products and drug delivery. Currently, Nsengiyumva is conducting research in the UB Laboratory for Interfaces and Self-Assembly, where his work focuses on the water-soluble polymers that are involved in the extraction of unconventional oil and gas. He is interested in polymers that can be utilized in the presence of high salinity water in order to reduce the use of fresh water. This research will prove beneficial to the environment and energy resources. He is interested in protecting the Western New York environment with a strong focus on water quality. His future plans include completing his PhD in chemical engineering and starting his own chemical company that focuses on designing and manufacturing formulated products in the Western New York area.
Philip Schneider is co-founder, president and chief technology officer of La Salle Concepts. He graduated cum laude with his BS in electrical engineering and is currently pursuing his MS and PhD in electrical engineering at UB. As a member of the university’s Sensor and MicroActuators Learning Lab, Schneider’s current research includes the development of new health care-related wearable technologies for point-of-care applications, the use of biometric technologies in the mobile consumer market, and the creation of state-of-the-art test phantoms for medical sensor testing and validation. Schneider has a true passion for bringing STEM to the local community. He is the founder of Project FIS, an ongoing effort to inspire and motivate underrepresented students in STEM through hands-on, high energy, interactive science experiments. In addition, he mentors a FIRST Robotics team at Saint Joseph’s Collegiate Institute, and is part of the Westminster Charter School initiative, where he teaches science classes to kindergarten through second-grade students. He aspires to be a successful business owner, bridging his backgrounds in science and technology with his business acumen to directly contribute to the region’s economic resurgence.