Kaylee grew up in small-town Northeastern Iowa, but she was anything but a “country girl”. She was interested in academics from day one, and even helped her grandmother put together 1000-piece jigsaw puzzles at the age of 5 (even if it was mostly the edge pieces). Kaylee later ended up in the Chemical Engineering department at the University of Iowa where she performed research in a medical devices laboratory, was made president of Iowa’s AIChE chapter during her Junior year, and spent a summer in Huntsville, Alabama working at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in a propulsion dynamics group. Not satisfied after four years of undergraduate, Kaylee decided graduate school was everything she wanted. She is currently pursuing her PhD in Chemical Engineering at MIT and has already completed her Masters in Chemical Engineering Practice.
Kaylee has had the opportunity to mentor and teach quite often during her education, with students of many ages and backgrounds. She was asked to be a teaching assistant (TA) twice during her undergraduate work by professors at Iowa, and she certainly didn’t stop there. During her time at MIT, she was not only a TA for one semester, but she spent 3 additional semesters grading for various graduate-level classes, during which she helped students perfect both the technical and communication aspects of their work. More recently, Kaylee was asked to co-teach the class she TA’d, called Systems Engineering, with her academic advisor where she was asked to design and deliver lectures to first-year graduate chemical engineering students, as well as assist in designing class projects and homework, and drawing up relevant examples to be used throughout the semester. Additionally, Kaylee has mentored middle school students through Cambridge School Volunteer’s NetPals program, which focuses on getting 7th graders excited about possible careers in STEM fields.
When Kaylee isn’t buried in her research, she enjoys reading new books, putting together jigsaw puzzles, and playing card and board games of all kinds. She also loves the outdoors and doesn’t hesitate to hike various trails all over the New England area, as well as train for and compete in Tough Mudder races.