Class of 2015
During her freshman year, Katie Bodner and 13 undergraduates developed a way to "program" cells and organisms using genetic circuits, the same way computer scientists program computers using software.
Fueled by her experience in Professor Ron Weiss' lab, she launched an independent research project under post-doctoral fellow Dr. Tasuku Kitada to create programmable vaccines. They allow for complete control over the dosage and timing of the vaccine, optimal for treatment of complex diseases like HIV.
Today, her research is being used to create vaccination "prime-boost" circuits; a doctor injects a patient with a vaccine and then the patient takes a pill to experience the boost, eliminating the need for booster shots. In countries where health care clinics are largely inaccessible, it helps reduce the number of doctor visits.
Bodner, who has a 5.0 GPA, plans to continue her studies in biological engineering in a doctoral program. She hopes to one day become a professor.
Source : http://www.businessinsider.com/most-impressive-students-at-mit-2014-11