Deanne Bell

Deanne Bell is an engineer, television host, and the founder of, a platform that hosts national invention challenges for students.

She received a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Washington University in St. Louis. Prior to becoming a TV host, Deanne designed opto-mechanics for military aircraft sensors and worked as a senior application engineer for a CAD software startup in Boston. 

In 2006, Deanne took her first job in television as a co-host for the Peabody Award winning children’s series, Design Squad. She is currently a co-host for CNBC’s ‘Make Me a Millionaire Inventor, and her previous hosting credits include ESPN, Discovery Channel, National Geographic, and DIY Network. 

In 2014, Deanne founded Future Engineers, which hosted its inaugural challenge in partnership with NASA and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers Foundation. Students were asked to create a digital 3D model of a space tool, and the winning design is being 3D printed aboard the International Space Station. 


Jaydev Desai

Dr. Jaydev P. Desai is currently a Professor in the Department of Biomedical Engineering at Georgia Institute of Technology and Director of RoboMed Laboratory. Prior to joining UMCP, he was an Associate Professor at Drexel University. He completed his undergraduate studies from the Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, India, in 1993. He received his M.A. in Mathematics in 1997, M.S. and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering and Applied Mechanics in 1995 and 1998 respectively, all from the University of Pennsylvania. Prior to joining Drexel University, he was a Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Division of Engineering and Applied Sciences at Harvard University. He is a recipient several NIH R01 awards, NSF CAREER award, and was also the lead inventor on the “Outstanding Invention of 2007 in Physical Science Category” at the University of Maryland, College Park. He is also the recipient of the Ralph R. Teetor Educational Award. In 2011, he was an invited speaker at the National Academy of Sciences “Distinctive Voices” seminar series on the topic of “Robot-Assisted Neurosurgery” at the Beckman Center. He was also invited to attend the National Academy of Engineering’s 2011 U.S. Frontiers of Engineering Symposium. His research interests include image-guided surgical robotics, reality-based soft-tissue modeling for surgical simulation, grasping, haptics, and micro-scale cell and tissue characterization. He is also a fellow of the ASME and a senior member of the IEEE.



Tom Gray

Tom Gray is the CEO for Make48 and Senior Product Strategist for The Handy Camel.

Make48 is a 48-hour event competition turned television documentary series on the American Public Television network about teaching how anyone who has a big idea can take it from napkin design to prototype to the consumer. Make48 is moving into education as Season 3's competition will be 12 colleges and universities from around the nation going head to head to head.


Amy Hurst

Dr. Amy Hurst is an Associate Professor of Human-Centered Computing in the Information Systems Department whose research focuses on empowering technology, with projects investigating automatically adaptive interfaces and DIY-Assistive Technology. She is interested in working to help more people gain access to the Assistive Technology they need by empowering non-engineers to “Do It Yourself” (DIY) and create, modify or build. She received her PhD from the Human-Computer Interaction Institute at Carnegie Mellon, and a BS in Computer Science from Georgia Tech.


Bon Ku

Bon Ku, MD, MPP is the Assistant Dean for Health and Design and an Associate Professor at the Sidney Kimmel Medical College at Thomas Jefferson University. He is a practicing emergency medicine physician and the founder/director of the first design thinking program in a medical school. His innovative program that teaches future physicians to apply human-centered design to healthcare challenges has been highlighted in the The New York Times, New England Journal of Medicine Catalyst, The Huffington Post, Next City and Architectural Digest. Dr. Ku has spoken widely on the intersection of health and design thinking (TEDx, South by Southwest, Mayo Clinic Transform, Stanford Medicine X)  and serves on the Design and Health Leadership Group at the American Institute of Architects. He received the Health Care Innovators Award from the Philadelphia Business Journal and made the Best of Philly list in Philadelphia Magazine. Dr. Ku holds a master’s degree in Public Policy from Princeton University, MD from Penn State and a bachelor’s degree in Classical Studies from the University of Pennsylvania


Wayne K. Li

Wayne K. Li is the James L. Oliver Professor, which is a joint position between the Colleges of Design and Engineering. Through classes and the Innovation and Design Collaboration (IDC), he leads joint teaching initiatives and advances interdisciplinary collaboration between mechanical engineering and industrial design. Endowed by School of Industrial Design alumnus James L. Oliver, II (BS ID 1965, ME 1967), the Oliver professor embodies the idea of "multidisciplinary." Li teaches students that design behavior bridges the language and ideological gap between engineering and design. Li’s research areas include ethnographic research, multidisciplinary online education, and human-machine interaction in transportation design.

Previously, Li led innovation and market expansion for Pottery Barn seasonal home products, was an influential teacher in Stanford University’s design program where he taught visual communication and digital media techniques, led “interface development” in Volkswagen of America’s Electronics Research Laboratory, and developed corporate brand and vehicle differentiation strategies at Ford Motor Company.

He received a Master of Science in Engineering from Stanford University, and undergraduate degrees in Fine Arts in Design and Mechanical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin.

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Jason Martin

Jason Martin founded Community Guilds Inc. in 2013 to transform public education. Through their work, kids tackle real problems, design solutions, get their hands dirty, and then, with community experts, build amazing innovations together. Community Guilds harnesses the power of the maker movement to provide apprenticeship learning and school-based programs that seek to ignite a love of learning in students and transform teaching in schools. STE(A)M Truck is the largest program offered by Community Guilds and served over 10,000 students in the 2017-18 school year. Jason is a former Teach For America corps member, with over 20 years of education reform experience. Jason has degrees from Rutgers and Columbia University but believes he learned the essential skills needed for success as a former mason's apprentice, Kindergarten teacher and Outward Bound instructor. He lives with his wife and two daughters on an organic farm in East Lake, GA.


Henry Segerman

Henry Segerman received his masters in mathematics from the University of Oxford, and his Ph.D. in mathematics from Stanford University. He is currently an assistant professor in the department of mathematics at Oklahoma State University. His research interests are in three-dimensional geometry and topology, and in mathematical art and visualization. In visualization, he works mostly in the medium of 3D printing, with other interests in spherical video, virtual, and augmented reality. He is the author of the book "Visualizing Mathematics with 3D Printing".


H. Jerry Qi

Dr. H Jerry Qi is Professor and the Woodruff Faculty Fellow in the George W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech. He received his bachelor degree and graduate degrees from Tsinghua University and a Doctor of Science degree from Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). After one-year postdoc at MIT, he joined University of Colorado Boulder as an assistant professor in 2004. He joined Georgia Tech in 2014 as an associate professor and was promoted to a full professor in 2016. Prof. Qi’s research is in the broad field of nonlinear mechanics of polymeric materials and focuses on developing fundamental understanding of multi-field properties of soft active materials through experimentation and constitutive modeling then applying these understandings to application designs. He and his collaborators have been working on a range of soft active materials, including shape memory polymers, shape memory elastomeric composites, light activated polymers, covalent adaptable network polymers, for their interesting behaviors such as shape memory, light actuation, surface patterning, surface welding, healing, and reprocessing. In recent years, he has been working on integrating active materials with 3D printing. He and his collaborators pioneered the 4D printing concept. Prof. Qi is a recipient of NSF CAREER award (2007). In 2015, he was elected to an ASME Fellow.

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Christopher B. Williams

Christopher B. Williams is an Associate Professor and Electro Mechanical Corporation Faculty Fellow in the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Virginia Tech. He holds affiliate faculty positions in the Department of Engineering Education and the Department of Material Science & Engineering. He is the Director of the Design, Research, and Education for Additive Manufacturing Systems (DREAMS) Laboratory and Associate Director of the Macromolecules Innovation Institute (MII). His research contributions have been recognized by eight Best Paper awards at international design, manufacturing, and engineering education conferences. He is a recipient of a National Science Foundation CAREER Award (2013), the 2012 International Outstanding Young Researcher in Freeform and Additive Fabrication Award, and the 2010 Emerald Engineering Additive Manufacturing Outstanding Doctoral Research Award. He serves on the Additive Manufacturing Community Advisors for SME. Chris holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Mechanical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology (Atlanta, Georgia) and a B.S. with High Honors in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Florida (Gainesville, Florida).