Marie Ettien is an undergraduate student in the Department of Biomedical Engineering and the President of the UB chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE). The UB chapter is one of over 200 student chapters across the country providing support, community, and development opportunities for future black engineers.
Where are you from?
I was born in France but moved to Brooklyn, NY when I was about 6.
Why did you choose to go into engineering?
I chose biomedical engineering specifically because I loved the way the field bridged the gap between medicine and engineering.
What motivated you to be a part of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE)?
I love that NSBE is a family. From the second I stepped foot on campus, NSBE has supported me academically and socially. I wanted to give back to an organization that has given me so much.
What's your favorite part of being in NSBE?
My favorite thing about being in NSBE is the friendships I have formed and the fun hang outs we have as a club.
Is there anything new or particularly exciting that NSBE has been doing recently?
Our organization has started mental health talks. Oftentimes, as engineers we push ourselves so much that we forget how important mental health is. These talks are meant to remind students the importance of self-care.
What are you working on right now?
Right now, I am working with Dr. Mara Huber on a conceptual model to redesign bathrooms in local Tanzanian schools. This project aims to rebuild bathrooms in efforts to reduce school dropout rates, as well as provide girls with sanitary products and educate them on sanitation.
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about promoting having better healthcare in black and brown communities. I am particularly passionate about effecting change within the prosthetics field by getting better quality prosthetics for amputees.
What are your future plans?
I hope to go to grad school and begin working in the orthopedic field, specifically on AI devices.
What is your advice for prospective students?
Enjoy it. Sometimes I honestly cannot believe I am almost done with my junior year. Engineering is hard so work hard but stop and smell the roses from time to time.
Learn more about the UB chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers (NSBE) here, and connect with them on Instagram, @ubnsbe.