Designing IoT Products to Connect the World

Ryan Lee (MMM ’16) talks about how Northwestern’s MMM program prepared him for his work as senior director of product management with Hologram, an Internet of Things startup. Published May 17, 2022 Ryan Lee spent more than five years as a consultant, and he enjoyed helping clients solve their business and technology challenges. But heContinue reading “Designing IoT Products to Connect the World”

An Eight-Point Plan For Success

Current student Raj Shekhar Madhurakavi talks about the lessons he’s learned in the MEM program as he prepares for graduation and a new role as senior program manager at Mathworks. Published May 17, 2022 Raj Shekhar Madhurakavi is ready to change the world. Shekhar will begin working this July as a senior program manager atContinue reading “An Eight-Point Plan For Success”

Making Sense of the Magic

Denny Hsieh applies lessons from Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Project Management (MPM) program into his daily work at Intel. Published May 10, 2022 Denny Hsieh speaks candidly when he discusses his skills as a presenter prior to starting the capstone communication project in Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Project Management (MPM) program. “I was pretty bad,”Continue reading “Making Sense of the Magic”

Seeing the Science in Person

MBP director Danielle Tullman-Ercek and two current students talked about the American Chemical Society’s massive spring gathering and how Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Biotechnology Program (MBP) is preparing students for new trends and innovations. Published April 20, 2022 There was a lot of “new” for Olivia Meyer and Byron Fan when they attended the AmericanContinue reading “Seeing the Science in Person”

Designing Products People Love

Bridget McMullan (MPD2 ’17) is using her MPD2 knowledge to meet member needs as director of product strategy at Anthem, America’s largest for-profit health insurer. Published April 20, 2022 Bridget McMullan expected that falsified or lost COVID-19 vaccine cards would be a problem for the public once vaccinations became available.  As the director of productContinue reading “Designing Products People Love”

What I Learned Creating A Self-Balancing Robot

Anna Garverick talks about her experience creating a robot that remains centered on a moving ball and the most important lessons she took away from the experience. Published April 20, 2022 The night before Anna Garverick was to present her independent project for Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Science in Robotics (MSR) program, she learned aContinue reading “What I Learned Creating A Self-Balancing Robot”

An April Look At Our 2022 Housing Market Predictions

Published April 13, 2022 Back in January, we gazed into The Official Allen Brake Team Housing Market Crystal Ball and asked the question “Is the housing market about to crash?” Now that we’re a quarter of the way through 2022, let’s take a look back at our prognostications and see how close we are soContinue reading “An April Look At Our 2022 Housing Market Predictions”

iBuyer Beware: How Sellers Lose

Published March 23, 2022 It sounds too good to be true: Boot up the old Google machine, punch in some data about the home you’re looking to sell and whammo! Have an all-cash offer in less than 24 hours.  While it’s a possibility with sites like Offerpad and Opendoor, the old adage holds true: If itContinue reading “iBuyer Beware: How Sellers Lose”

Inside The Better.Com Debacle

Published March 8, 2022 Another day, another crash for a company once believed to have special insight into the real estate industry.  This time it is mortgage lending start-up Better.com, which announced in early March it was laying off nearly half its workforce after stumbling mightily in a shifting housing market.  Its decision to axContinue reading “Inside The Better.Com Debacle”

Big Brother Zillow Is Watching You

Published March 7, 2022 George Orwell’s famous book “1984″ came out 35 years before the dystopian world in which the author imagined a government that is watching you – always watching you. Now, more than 35 years after Orwell’s imaginary future, Zillow has made it a reality with people doing nothing more devious than searching forContinue reading “Big Brother Zillow Is Watching You”

What’s Your Hidden Investment Worth?

Published March 7, 2022 When James Micioni passed away in 2020 at the age of 97, he left a long-forgotten investment for his family to uncover – a collection of more than 1,000 vintage baseball cards, including one signed by Babe Ruth.  What was purchased for mere pennies as a boy had grown to beContinue reading “What’s Your Hidden Investment Worth?”

Mastering the Work-School Juggling Act

Thomas Sparks embraces the chaos of life as a full-time IT professional and part-time MSIT student in pursuit of his dream job. Published March 9, 2022 Evenings for Thomas Sparks can be a bit chaotic.   As a student in Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) part-time program, he can easily spend twoContinue reading “Mastering the Work-School Juggling Act”

Regrowing Hope for Transplant Patients

Published March 15, 2022 Andrew Benintende, MD, has witnessed the tragic consequences when a human body rejects a transplanted organ. His goal is to stop that rejection from happening.   Dr. Benintende is taking time away from his general surgery residency at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City to perform research at NorthwesternContinue reading “Regrowing Hope for Transplant Patients”

Helping iRobot Become a Tech Lifestyle Brand

Students in Northwestern’s Engineering Design Innovation (EDI) program collaborated with the company known for its Roomba® vacuum cleaner to address new business opportunities. Published April 14, 2022 Visitors to the iRobot website are greeted by a picture of a Roomba cleaning a living room floor on its own. The robot vacuum is the most famousContinue reading “Helping iRobot Become a Tech Lifestyle Brand”

MSIT Skillset Lands Current Student with New Job

Part-time student Kanika Singh talks about the lessons she’s learned in Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Science in Information Technology (MSIT) program and how the program helped her move into a leadership role at her company. Published March 25, 2022 Kanika Singh was a learning technologies analyst at the global law firm DLA Piper when sheContinue reading “MSIT Skillset Lands Current Student with New Job”

Shaping Biotech’s Future, at Genentech and MBP

Andy Lin talks about his role at the major biotech company and his role as a mentor on the Industrial Advisory Board (IAB) for Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Biotechnology Program (MBP). Published April 15, 2022 Andy Lin knows what it takes to be successful in the rapidly evolving biotechnology industry.  As the technical development teamContinue reading “Shaping Biotech’s Future, at Genentech and MBP”

The Question That Defined a Career

Joanna Szymel (EMDC ‘20) talks about launching her own construction and consulting firm as an EMDC student, thanks in part to a professor’s simple comment. Published March 25, 2022 A twist on a familiar saying helped Joanna Szymel determine the next stage of her career. As a new student in Northwestern Engineering’s Master of ScienceContinue reading “The Question That Defined a Career”

What Happens When You Ignore Career Advice

Diane Zimmer (MPM ’97, EMDC ’14) has built a 20-plus-year career in the construction industry, thanks in large part to her willingness to ignore suggestions of what she should do professionally. Published April 13, 2022 One of Diane Zimmer’s favorite pieces of career advice is that sometimes it’s important not to listen to other people’sContinue reading “What Happens When You Ignore Career Advice”

Embracing Artificial Intelligence and Automation

Naveed Asem’s new MSIT mini-course will unveil how to responsibly shape the future with emerging technology. Published April 15, 2022 Naveed Asem said the emergence of artificial intelligence (AI) has put humanity at a crossroads. In his opinion, those who embrace AI now will thrive in the future; people who don’t take it seriously willContinue reading “Embracing Artificial Intelligence and Automation”

Understanding Tomorrow’s Technology Solutions Today

MSIT IAB Chairman Kevin Glynn talks about next-generation technological innovations and how MSIT is preparing students to leverage them in the future. Published April 15, 2022 When Kevin Glynn thinks about the future of information technology, his mind goes to quantum computing.  Glynn, who is the chairman of Northwestern Engineering’s Master of Science and InformationContinue reading “Understanding Tomorrow’s Technology Solutions Today”

Next-Generation Career Development

A recent MEM event with the American Association of Engineers of Indian Origin (AAEIO) helps students focus on finding their way in a post-digital world. Published April 15, 2022 Students from Northwestern’s Master of Engineering Management (MEM) program gathered earlier this year to learn how to shape their careers in a world where technology andContinue reading “Next-Generation Career Development”

Designing with Curiosity, Bravery, and Optimism

EDI advisory board member Kevin Bethune’s new book, Reimagining Design, reflects the optimism he brings to design during times of exponential change. Published April 7, 2022 There is an aspirational nature that exists among most designers, a common feeling of optimism that design can make things better, that design can make life better.  KKevin BethuneContinue reading “Designing with Curiosity, Bravery, and Optimism”

Missions: Mars and the Moon

MEM student Usman Rafiq is helping humankind’s latest space exploration efforts. Published April 15, 2022 Usman Rafiq is part of humankind’s quest to reach faraway frontiers.  As a member of Northwestern’s Master of Engineering Management (MEM) program, Rafiq is honing the skills he needs to push himself into higher leadership positions to help guide NASA’sContinue reading “Missions: Mars and the Moon”

The Hidden Cost of Waiting to Buy

Republished from allenbrake.com If I told you that super-cute sweater you were looking at was going to cost 10% less tomorrow, you’d wait to buy it. Of course you would. It’s 10% and one day. Smart move. If you’re taking that same approach when you’re looking to buy a house, you could be making aContinue reading “The Hidden Cost of Waiting to Buy”

Top 5 Advantages of Buying in Winter

Republished from allenbrake.com Attribute it to whatever you’d like, but most of us feel an increased desire to hunker down and hibernate during the winter. Tis the season for hoodies, warm blankets and cozy fires in the fireplace.  Also tis one of the best seasons to buy a house.  “Are you kidding me?!” you replyContinue reading “Top 5 Advantages of Buying in Winter”

Five Easy Questions to Help You Select the Right Realtor

Republished from allenbrake.com Your husband asks you where you want to go to eat Friday night. Great question. Of course, you’re not entirely sure why he doesn’t just tell you where he wants to go eat Friday night, but whatever. You’re on it.  You think about what you’re in the mood for — Italian. Great.Continue reading “Five Easy Questions to Help You Select the Right Realtor”

Top 5 Reasons to Sell in Winter

Republished from allenbrake.com It’s not the winter weather that’s starting to cool down the hot sellers’ housing market of the past year or so, but the cold front is forming nonetheless.  A mix of rising interest rates and an increase in the number of homes on the market are starting to tamp down buyer demand,Continue reading “Top 5 Reasons to Sell in Winter”

Welcome to Your New (Virtual) Home

Republished from allenbrake.com Can we interest you in buying a house that doesn’t exist?  Oh, and we’re not talking about a piece of property on which you can build your dream home. We’re talking about something that isn’t part of our reality.  Confused? Talk to your kid.  Today’s children know all about the metaverse. IfContinue reading “Welcome to Your New (Virtual) Home”

Five Home Buying Mistakes You Can Avoid in 2022

Republished from allenbrake.com A new year comes with a sense of freshness. Once that calendar flips from what was to what is, it’s like there’s a clean slate on which you can write a new story.  No one wants to make the same mistakes from the previous year, whether it’s getting back together with theContinue reading “Five Home Buying Mistakes You Can Avoid in 2022”

Is The Housing Market About To Crash? 

Reprinted from allenbrake.com Key Points The year that just ended was a historically unprecedented seller’s market in the St. Louis region.  Many of the same market conditions exist in 2022.  Rising interest rates make this a key time for potential buyers to take action.  Remember the Cabbage Patch Kid craze of 1983? If not, it’sContinue reading “Is The Housing Market About To Crash? “

Top 3 Things To Learn When Test Driving Your Dream Home

Republished from allenbrake.com If you’re in the market for a Ferrari 485, first off, lucky you. More importantly, we probably don’t need to tell you that you might want to take it for a test drive before plopping down the more than $270,000 it would take to bring one home.  Whether it’s a Ferrari orContinue reading “Top 3 Things To Learn When Test Driving Your Dream Home”

Want to Sell in Spring? Plant the Seeds Today!

Republished from allenbrake.com Anyone who has ever tended a garden, worked on a farm or taken a basic science class would tell you it’s crazy to expect to be able to plant a seed one day and harvest the next. As it goes with seeds, so it goes with a home you’d like to sell. Continue reading “Want to Sell in Spring? Plant the Seeds Today!”

Top 5 Ways Buyers Can Win in a Sellers Market

Republished from allenbrake.com If the past year has taught the real estate world anything, it’s that it’s actually possible to see dollar signs in people’s eyes.  With a bounty of buyers looking to land their dream homes and a historical shortage of houses on the market, home prices have boomed in the past year. TellContinue reading “Top 5 Ways Buyers Can Win in a Sellers Market”

A Life-Changing Month for Johan

Boy returns to Honduras with iPad, greater independence  One morning in the not-too-distant future, Johan will leave his house and join his classmates on the walk to school in his mountainous home village outside Ocotepeque, Honduras. Slung on his back locked safely in a sturdy case will be an iPad donated to him during hisContinue reading “A Life-Changing Month for Johan”

A Beginner’s Guide to ‘Telling Stories to Live’

Somehow, you’ve stumbled upon this little corner of the Internet. Now you’re trying to figure out exactly what’s happening here. Giddy-up. Let’s go. Who runs this site? I’m John Agliata. I am a professional storyteller, expert father and husband, certified life coach, decent boys basketball coach, amateur comedian and a good faker at a wholeContinue reading “A Beginner’s Guide to ‘Telling Stories to Live’”

What This Site Is All About, As Told In 38 Gifs

So what exactly is going on here? Well, a lot. This website is various measures of creativity, therapy, safety, career exploration, vanity and insanity (plus a few mystery ingredients I haven’t quite identified yet) — all dumped into one glass, shaken (not stirred) and poured into a 32-ounce Big Gulp cup. To better understand whatContinue reading “What This Site Is All About, As Told In 38 Gifs”

Trifecta of ‘Nobel Prize’ Awards

Farshid Guilak, Ph.D., has won what industry insiders call the Nobel Prize for orthopaedics – and it’s for the third time. The director of the Research Center at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis earned this year’s Kappa Delta award from the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) as he celebrates five years here.Continue reading “Trifecta of ‘Nobel Prize’ Awards”

Stopping Pain from the Inside

What if, instead of addressing post-surgery pain with a pill or IV drip, a patient’s own cells could be triggered to prevent it? This is one of the goals of a new field of medicine created by investigators with the Research Center at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis. It’s called “mechanogenetics,” and itsContinue reading “Stopping Pain from the Inside”

Care from Routine to Rare

On a Tuesday afternoon late last year, Lindley Wall, M.D., checked on the progress of Chloe, a teenager whose broken arm she repaired after a tubing accident on the Lake of the Ozarks. A day later, J. Eric Gordon, M.D., charted the next steps in treatment for Camille, a patient with a literally one-in-a-million leg condition calledContinue reading “Care from Routine to Rare”

Dr. Chuck and the Pod People

It’s a Saturday afternoon and Charles Goldfarb, M.D., is in his basement cracking himself up. Upstairs, his wife, Talia, knows exactly what’s going on: Her husband is editing his podcast again. Chuck, as Dr. Goldfarb is known to just about everyone, is a nationally-renowned hand surgeon at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis, and co-hostsContinue reading “Dr. Chuck and the Pod People”

Lucy’s Shriners Hospital Christmas

On Christmas morning, Santa – who bears an uncanny resemblance to medical resident Alex Wendling – is scheduled to make a special stop at the inpatient unit of Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis. The jolly old elf has found the temporary home of a 12-year-old girl from Guatemala named Lucy. He will comeContinue reading “Lucy’s Shriners Hospital Christmas”

Virtual Visit From a Cardinals Ace

In a year in which physical presence has too often been replaced by sometimes fuzzy images of loved ones near and far, St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Jack Flaherty came through crystal clear Friday afternoon. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tall, baby-faced right-hander was unable to come into Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis as heContinue reading “Virtual Visit From a Cardinals Ace”

Stronger Bonds, Brighter Future

Hannah arrived in the United States on Christmas Eve last year, held in the arms of her new adoptive parents, Deanne and Matt. She stepped into a family filled with love, Christmas traditions and new siblings – three, to be exact – more than 8,000 miles from the orphanage in India she had called home.Continue reading “Stronger Bonds, Brighter Future”

Back to the Beautiful Music

Jasmine nestles her viola underneath her chin and takes a deep breath. She raises her bow and, as she glides it smoothly over the strings, warm, rich tones fill the air. The 11-year-old Evansville, Indiana, girl can get lost in the moment while making music. Thanks to recent surgery at Shriners Hospitals for Children —Continue reading “Back to the Beautiful Music”

A Hug From La-La Higgy Bear

Arrya’s eyelids were drooping toward sleep mode as she sat in her wheelchair with her bedazzled halo traction device holding her head upright. Having had surgery less than 24 hours before and just gone through a tough physical therapy session, the 6-year-old Kentucky girl was in serious need of a nap. Clutched in her leftContinue reading “A Hug From La-La Higgy Bear”

A World Away From Pain

Physical therapists firmly stretched Karley’s surgically lengthened right leg, trying to get the last 15 degrees of bend out of her knee. Meanwhile, Karley was in outer space chasing puppies. “She’s not as tense,” said Karley’s mom, Kayla, as she looked at her daughter on the treatment table, virtual reality goggles running the Space PupsContinue reading “A World Away From Pain”

Faster and Safer

Don’t think of a purple elephant. You thought of a purple elephant, didn’t you? For Madison, a 16-year-old Murphysboro, Illinois, resident, something similar happened when radiology technicians told her to stand still for X-rays as she started scoliosis treatment 3 1/2 years ago at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis. “When someone tells youContinue reading “Faster and Safer”

Deep Breaths, Deeper Bond

The first time Respiratory Therapy Manager Marcela Spraul tried to get Courtney to walk, the then-12-year-old simply refused. Now 17, Courtney is planning to follow in Marcela’s footsteps. The Olive Branch, Mississippi, resident was at Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis on Oct. 19 for a follow-up visit. She sought Marcela to tell herContinue reading “Deep Breaths, Deeper Bond”

Finding the Beautiful Swan Within

The year was 1979, and Shari was a shattered 11-year-old girl. With a spine curved so severely by scoliosis that she struggled to lift her head to look forward, she was the target of her classmates’ abuse. “I would get kicked. I would get spit on,” she said, struggling to hold back tears even 43Continue reading “Finding the Beautiful Swan Within”

From Donor to Dad

When he first heard about Shriners Hospitals for Children — St. Louis, Tom was toiling as an undersized 6-foot-tall center on the Odin (Illinois) High School basketball team trying – mostly unsuccessfully – to guard the other teams’ behemoth big men. His coach organized a fundraiser to purchase toys for the hospital’s child life department.Continue reading “From Donor to Dad”