2013 REU

Group Photo

The group photo below was taken at the 8th International Conference on Cognitive Radio Oriented Wireless Networks (CROWNCOM 2013)in Washington, DC. It was a fantastic experience for these students to attend a professional conference in cognitive radio to hear the experts, watch their presentations and learn about the new directions and developments in the field of cognitive radio. It also gave them a wonderful introduction into how to prepare for their own presentations at the annual Virginia Tech symposium. 

Left to right: Front Row: Laci Sears, Samuel Walker,Cecilia Chen, Hannah Bowers, Sam Henderson
Back Row: Amos Ajo, Natasha Hatton, Wosen Agedie, NSF Program Officer Min Song, Matt Davis, Dr. Carl Dietrich

Student Biographies

Wosen Agedie

Wosen AgedieWosen Agedie is a senior from the University of Maryland - College Park, majoring in Electrical Engineering. Wosen is interested in communication research. He took this research opportunity at Virginia Tech as a step towards his future goal of scientific research in quantum physics. Wosen has participated in a previous spectrograph competition with his team taking first place. Wosen loves how this universe is made and wants to know more about the basic principles of the physical universe. He enjoys working in a group environment and also sometimes likes to work alone. His future plan is to become a quantum physicist so he is planning to go to graduate school but hasn't quite decided where. In his spare time, Wosen enjoys playing soccer and ping pong, and loves spending time at church with his family and friends. 


Amos Ajo

Amos AjoMy name is Amos Ajo. I am 21 years old and was born in Atlanta, GA. I currently live in Danville, VA and I attend Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, VA. I am an Electrical Engineering Major with a minor in Mathematics. My academic interests are in communications and thus I am very excited about the research and learning opportunities provided for me here at the Cognitive Communications REU through Wireless @ Virginia Tech. In my free time I enjoy sports, music of all kinds, and learning about different cultures

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Hannah Bowers

Hannah BowersHannah Bowers is from Fredericksburg, Virginia, and will be a junior at Sweet Briar College. She is majoring in Engineering Science with a focus on Mechatronics. Mechatronics is the combined study of mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, control engineering and computer engineering. Hannah also rides horses competitively at SBC and her hobby is training horses. 
Her goal for the REU this summer is to learn as much as possible about research and working on a project for an entire summer. Hannah also has an interest in graduate school and hopes this experience will help with her future educational pursuits.


Cecilia Chen

Cecilia ChenCecilia Chen Huang is a junior at the University of Puerto Rico at Mayaguez, majoring in Computer Science. She was born in Barranquilla, Colombia and has lived in Puerto Rico since she was 2 years old. In order to gain experience to prepare for graduate school she participated in her second summer REU at Virginia Tech to increase her knowledge in Cognitive Communications. Her first experience in a summer REU was at the University of Houston. Cecilia enjoys listening to music, singing and watching anime. She also enjoys programming and hopes to learn more about artificial intelligence, software development and game development and is planning to get a Master’s degree in Software Development.


Christopher Davis:

Chris DavisChristopher Davis is from Newport News, VA. He is a senior at Norfolk State University majoring in electronics engineering. He came to the REU program at Virginia Tech to gain research experience and to satisfy a growing interest in the field of wireless communication. Chris’ future plans include attending graduate school at Norfolk State University, where he has already been awarded a scholarship. Chris enjoys spending time with his wife and their dogs. When he is not working on DIY house projects, Chris enjoys hiking, boating, camping, and fishing.


Matthew Davis

Matt DavisI currently am enrolled as a senior at the University of Kentucky double-majoring in Electrical Engineering and Computer Engineering. I have been playing tennis my whole life and was able to compete at the highest level playing for the nationally ranked University of Kentucky Men’s Tennis Team. Now that my tennis career is over, I am very focused on my future as an engineer. In order to realize the same success experienced on the tennis court, I wish to pursue a Master’s degree in my respective field, while also attending a prominent technical institution like Virginia Tech. Besides any type of physical activity, I really enjoy learning; I truly am an engineer at heart curious about how all things work. With the skills learned through my Bachelor’s and Master’s education, as well as any other work experience gathered along on the way, I hope to one day start my own company and design/manufacture products that have a true positive impact on society. By attending this REU program, I hope to attain the fundamental skills necessary to be successful at the graduate level in conducting research.


Natasha Hatton

Natasha HattonNatasha Hatton is a mechanical engineering major at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) in Richmond, VA. Her desire to learn more about research in the fields of computer and electrical engineering led her to the REU program at Virginia Tech. In the future, Natasha plans to either work in a green technology field or attend graduate school. She enjoys spending time with family, traveling, gardening, and carpentry. 


Samuel Henderson

Sam HendersonMy name is Samuel Henderson from Lexington Kentucky, I am an undergraduate student at the University of Kentucky, a senior Electrical Engineering major. My interest is in wireless communications, specifically cellular communication. I am focused on RF engineering and hope to contribute to the development of new base station transceivers used in LTE networks which may utilize the frequency spectrum more efficiently in terms of bandwidth and higher data rates. I joined the 2013 REU Cognitive Communication summer program at Virginia Tech to learn about Software Defined Radios (SDR) and Cognitive Radios (CR) which are both new approached methods in radio communication. In my spare time I play soccer or listen to music which I occasionally play on the keyboards.


Laci Sears

Laci SearsLaci Sears is from Suffolk, Virginia and is a rising senior at Norfolk State University at Norfolk, Virginia, pursuing an undergraduate degree in computer science/engineering. She enjoys learning more about different types of software and how engineering and computer science can be used together to achieve a certain goal. She came to the REU program at Virginia Tech, hoping to gain more undergraduate research experience and a further understanding of the engineering field. She participated in an REU program at Montclair State University last summer and hopes to learn of all the aspects that her major entails from a different side through this REU experience.
Laci loves to sing, read books from various genres, and spend time with her friends and family. She is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated and is actively involved in numerous community service activities. Upon graduation, she plans to continue on to graduate school to obtain her Master’s and/or Doctorate degree in the area of computer science. She is undecided whether to begin a career in research or industry. She is hoping this REU experience will help her decide on which path she should choose.


Samuel Walker

Sam WalkerSamuel Walker is from Suitland, Maryland and is going to be a junior at the University of Maryland-Baltimore County. He is majoring in Mechanical Engineering and minoring in Music. He is a scholar in the Meyerhoff Scholarship Program which guides students into graduate programs and research careers. He is interested in automotive and aerospace engineering as future research interests. He likes to play the piano and the alto saxophone in his spare time. At school, he tutors other UMBC students in math, physics and engineering classes. Samuel Walker came to Virginia Tech because he wants more research experiencing and is considering applying here for graduate school.