Global Engineering Programs News

Print view


Student Lead Profile – Anneke Claypool

April 8, 2016

This article written about her is a part of a series of articles and interviews that seeks to give viewers of this website more information about the Student Leads of our different summer programs.

Anneke on being in South Africa as Student Lead for SETS 2016

Anneke Claypool is the student lead for SETS in South Africa for this summer. This summer, however, will not be the first time that Anneke will be going to the country. In the past, Anneke has traveled to South Africa several times, to visit and passing through. While visiting South Africa, she fell in love with the country and was fascinated by how it is the center of Southern Africa’s commerce and trade. Thus, when applications for SETS South Africa student lead opened up last Fall, with the focus on the study tour being technology and innovation, Anneke could not pass up on the opportunity to become student lead. “There is so much to learn by seeing the advances that are being made in other countries”, said Anneke in reference to why she decided to apply to be student lead for SETS South Africa. “I wanted to learn more about South Africa, especially with regards to how it is advancing STEM fields. I am very excited to find companies that push the boundaries of how Stanford students think of South Africa as well as to learn about the culture and history.”

More broadly, Anneke is interested in innovation and policy in countries besides the United States. Before coming to Stanford, she studied mathematics and international relations at the University of Colorado. Currently, she is pursuing a PhD in Management Science and Engineering with a focus on health policy. “The mathematics I studied [in college] was very theoretical while international relations was mostly qualitative. I am happy to be in MS&E where I can study both the theory behind the math we use and where I can apply those theories to real world problems.”

Anneke has also been to other countries in the Southern Africa region. Before coming to Stanford, she was a Peace Corps volunteer in Mozambique, a country north-east of South Africa. In Mozambique, she taught 9th and 11th grade mathematics in a high school. Her experience with teaching these high schoolers inspired her current course of study in health policy in graduate school. While in Mozambique, Anneke noticed that many of the problems facing the school – absent students, absent teachers, and homework completion – were health related. “I would talk to the students about malaria, when everyone was getting sick, and there was great awareness about how to get tested and treat malaria. What was lacking was a consistent supply of these test kits and treatments in the hospital. I decided I wanted to use my background in math to look at the policy problems in global health in order to work towards feasible solutions. I am very excited to be in a department where I can do just that.”  In her PhD program, Anneke uses mathematical models in order to test which health policies are the best choice considering the factors of the area.

In the future, Anneke hopes to research health systems in the United States and certain countries in Africa and Latin America as well as the ways in which these systems can be improved. Going to South Africa to examine innovation and technology with her Stanford mentees, Anneke hopes that that her experience in South Africa will contribute to her future goals with regards to innovation in health policy. “I am so happy to be leading a team of students in order to learn from interesting places, innovations, companies and organizations in such an important country in Africa. SETS South Africa is a great way to organize this and I think it will be a fantastic experience.”


Student Lead Interview – Herbert Silva

Last fall, Herbert Silva – a PhD student in the Stanford Mechanical Engineering Department – was selected to be the student lead for SSLP in Argentina for summer 2016. GEP student interns had the opportunity to interview Herbert in order to learn more about him and his interest in Argentina and in the field of engineering. Read his profile below to get to know more about him!

1. You are the student lead for SSLP Argentina. What is your background with respect to Argentina (e.g. are you a citizen, grew up there, did you study or work there in the past, have an interest in the country)?
I was born in Cusco, Peru and I love South America. This continent is very rich in resources (raw material) and culturally.  Argentina is different from other South American countries, but at the same time it is very similar, which is very intriguing to me. Last year, I attended the first South American Technology Space Generation Conference held in Argentina, where I interacted with many talented students and young professionals from Argentina, Colombia, Bolivia, Peru, Uruguay, and Brazil.
2. What made you decide to apply to be student lead for SSLP Argentina?
I believe South America has a lot to offer, especially Argentina.  This is the first time that Stanford is offering a Summer Service Learning Program in South America, and I wanted to help in any role that will ensure the success of this initiative to increase the relationship between Stanford and South America. 
3. The SSLP program in Argentina will allow for SoE students to work on a significant project that supports an international developing community. What is your background in service learning and engineering and how does it link to your interest in Argentina?
I have used my engineering background to participate in engineering projects in Mexico, Guatemala, Mozambique, and China. All of these projects were aimed at improving living conditions of developing communities while also promoting local empowerment and ownership of projects. I hope to continue devoting my background and efforts to provide opportunities for people by helping communities in the role that best suits the success of the project. Having been born and raised in Peru, I understand the urgency of the need for people to have secure and reliable basic resources. This program focuses on what I believe in, and allows students to learn about their strengths and weaknesses.  
4. What did you study for undergraduate and how is it different from the ME graduate program you are currently enrolled in?
I am in my 4th year of PhD. in Mechanical Engineering at Stanford University. I did my undergrad at Rutgers University in Mechanical Engineering. The focus of my research is on the biomechanics of cardiovascular tissues with an emphasis on tissues with pathologies. 
Parallel to my academic studies I have always been involved in service learning projects. During my travels to Mexico, Guatemala, Mozambique, and China I collaborated with fellow students from each country and worked on engineering problems with professional engineers. 
5. Could you give us some sense of where you see yourself in the future in terms of your career? How does the program you are leading possibly link to your future career goals?
As I look to the future, I hope to use my research and service experience to become a faculty member at a university, doing both research and working on service projects with students. I want to teach determination, creativity, hard work, and perseverance to colleagues and students. I will strive to provide educational opportunities for students like the ones I have been fortunate to have, so that they can discover their own passions. 
Being entrusted with the leadership role of the SSLP – Argentina gives me the opportunity to use my engineering education and experience in service, while also learning what it really takes to assemble a team to solve problems that affect many people in need. Throughout my experiences in service projects, I dealt not only with real technical aspects of engineering alongside professional engineers, but also with the social, political, economic, and cultural constraints involved in successfully implementing an engineering project. This extraordinary opportunity will help me materialize something I have envisioned for many years, which is that the world’s problems are vast, but if we combine forces and overcome our differences, great things can be accomplished.

Student Lead Profile – Tammy Chang

Last fall, Tammy Chang – a PhD student in the Stanford Electrical Engineering Department – was selected to be the student lead for our SETS program in China for summer 2016. GEP student interns had the opportunity to interview Tammy in order to learn more about her and her interest in China and in the field of engineering. Read her profile below to get to know more about her!



About Tammy Chang:

Tammy Chang is the Student Lead for SETS China 2016. Even though she was born in the U.S., her parents are immigrants to the U.S. from Taiwan. Tammy pursued her undergraduate career at UCLA, where she graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering. Since 2012, she has been at Stanford pursuing a PhD in Electrical Engineering.

Tammy’s research and internship work have largely been focused on the area of wireless communications, both in simulation and hardware development. As an undergraduate, her studies in electrical engineering was specialized in antennas and microwave circuits, but her research work was related to packet scheduling for wireless networks. As a graduate student, her  work is now focused on developing RF hardware for 5G and IoT wireless systems. Additionally, besides research in school, Tammy has interned for companies such as Agilent Technologies Inc, as well as Broadcom and Qualcomm. In the summers of 2011 and 2012, before coming to Stanford, Tammy received the UCLA-Peking University Joint Research Institute Scholarship to do research abroad in Beijing as an undergraduate student, working with Professor Anpeng Huang and Professor Wang Yang at Peking University. When she was in Beijing, she participated in a research group working on a LTE simulation platform for China Potevio, a company headquartered in the Zhongguancun district near Peking University. 

While abroad in Beijing, Tammy had an incredible time doing her research assistantship. She also had the wonderful opportunity to teach and mentor while in China, and remembering those great experiences in China, she couldn't help but feel like her background would be a good fit for SETS China 2016. Tammy’s time in China played a critical role in widening her perspective, and she wanted to be a part of that experience for other students through the SETS program. Her desire to widen students’ perspectives on the SETS China program also aligns with her desires to teach in the future. Tammy came to graduate school with the ambition of not only obtaining a PhD, but also acquiring the experience necessary for her to be an excellent teacher at the college level in the future. For her, SETS is important for this ambition; participation as a student lead in SETS provides an opportunity for her to teach and mentor undergraduates as well as graduate students in both their engineering study and personal experiences while visiting China. Tammy will likely also work as an engineer in the tech industry, so this experience will contribute to her establishing connections with Chinese companies and will also allow her to have a better understanding of them. At Stanford, Tammy and her research group frequently discuss the impact of wireless hardware companies such as Huawei and Apple, to name a few. She looks forward to digging deeper into China's tech development in relation to companies such as Huawei and Apple while on this study tour.


Meet our Faculty Leaders for SETS

For summer 2016, SETS will be in South Africa and China. Check out our faculty leaders for SETS in their profiles below!

Dr. Tina Seelig – Faculty Leader for SETS South Africa

Dr. Tina Seelig is Professor of the Practice in the Department of Management Science and Engineering (MS&E) at Stanford University. She earned a Ph.D. in Neuroscience from Stanford University School of Medical where she studied neuroplasticity. She has also worked as a management consultant for Booz, Allen, and Hamilton, as a multimedia producer at Compaq Computer Corporation, and was the founder of a multimedia company called BookBrowser.

Currently, Dr. Seelig is a faculty director of the Stanford Technology Ventures Program (SoE entrepreneurship center) and she also teaches courses on creativity, innovation, and entrepreneurship in the MS&E department and d-school.  Dr. Seelig has also written many books on the topics of creativity and entrepreneurship, including What I Wish I Knew When I Was 20  (2009), inGenius (2012), and Insight Out (2015).  It is only appropriate that Dr. Seelig would lead a GEP program focused on entrepreneurship and technology. She will definitely bring her enthusiasm for creativity and entrepreneurship to SETS this summer!

Check out her article on how companies need to continually reframe their businesses in order to survive as markets and technology change:



Dr. Matteo Cargnello – Faculty Leader for SETS China

Dr. Matteo Cargnello is Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering and Terman Faculty Fellow. He received his Ph.D. in Nanotechnology in 2012 at the University of Trieste (Italy) and he was then a post-doctoral scholar in the Chemistry Department at the University of Pennsylvania before joining the Faculty at Stanford. His group research interests are related to sustainable energy generation and use, control of emissions of greenhouse gases, and better utilization of abundant building blocks. His group research interests are in the preparation and use of uniform and tailored materials for heterogeneous catalysis and photocatalysis, as well as the technological exploitation of nanoparticles and nanocrystals. 

Check out what his research group has been up to at their research group site!







For updates and info on GEP programs, visit us at our Facebook page:


Tuesday, December 30, 2014. 12:20 am