Jaden Glover '25 is part of the Notre Dame Scholars' Program through the Allan J. and Reda Radwan Riley Scholarship. She is a mechanical engineering major and bioengineering minor from Louisiana. She's passionate about her STEM courses and loves her work as a Wellness Co-Commissioner for her on-campus home, Cavanaugh Hall.
Below, Glover talks about how she became a STEM major, how she got into her campus activities, and offers some advice on trying new things.
How did you choose your major and minor?
For as long as I can remember, I was playing with Legos which sparked a passion for innovating and creating. I always knew that I wanted to go into an engineering-related field, but it wasn’t until COVID when I realized that I'd want to utilize my engineering talents to play a part in helping out in the medical community.
During my senior year of high school, I took a dual-enrollment class that consisted of 'Introduction to Health Occupation' and 'Medical Terminology.' I fell in love with biology and learning how the body works. I did some research on how I could combine my two passions, and biomedical engineering was the answer.
As a biomedical engineer, I plan on specializing in internal fabrication using biomaterials to create artificial organs and microtechnologies that will ultimately improve the lives of those in need.
Because Notre Dame doesn't have a biomedical undergraduate program, I chose Mechanical Engineering as my major. The Department of Aerospace and Mechanical Engineering incorporates numerous projects during first-year engineering courses that involve critical-thinking, good communication and teamwork, and loads of creating and assembling. I really enjoy hands-on projects which is why declaring to be a MechE was perfect for me.
Bioengineering is offered only as a minor which allows me to obtain the necessary medical aspect of biomedical engineering. Notre Dame presents a very well-rounded curriculum which provides a sense of security with the Mechanical Engineering major even if I decide later that I don't want to pursue a biomedical route.
Are you doing any research, creative projects, or volunteering outside of class?
Over Christmas break, I volunteered with Structural Extreme Events Reconnaissance as a Notre Dame Virtual Engineer. I received training on assessing earthquake damage for Haitian construction caused by the 7.2 earthquake that occurred in Nippes, Haiti in August of 2021.
I was assigned a packet of records through the virtual platform, Fulcrum, where I reviewed and determined infrastructure damage levels of affected buildings. I also gained an introduction to the Haitian Creole language.
I am currently serving as the Wellness Co-Commissioner for Cavanaugh Hall this year after serving as First-Year Wellness Commissioner last year. I have big plans this school year in terms of providing opportunities for the women of Cavanaugh Hall.
Prioritizing mental health is extremely essential, especially for students at a rigorous school such as Notre Dame. Oftentimes we forget to take a breather.
A big project that I want to implement this year is a “butterfly release” inspired by The Behavioral Health Center of Nueces County’s event “Flight to Freedom from Stigma.”
My plan is that before finals week in the spring (right before the stress of finals and in the month of suicide awareness), we would ask our Cav residents to write on a small butterfly-shaped piece of paper things that they feel are burdens or troubling them. We would then “release” the butterflies off of the awning of Cavanaugh Hall.
This act represents letting go of stigma, stress, anxiety, or anything else written on the butterfly, looking forward to a bright and renewed future. Hopefully this will become an annual event with music and food that will be a nice pause before an intense week.
What has been your favorite class at ND so far, and why?
My favorite class this past year was 'Community Based Writing and Rhetoric' with Professor Nicole MacLaughlin. I took this class to fulfill my first-year writing requirement. I was frustrated at first because I knew that this course would take time away from my main focus like calculus and physics, but I was utterly shocked when I found myself falling in love with a writing class!
This course requires you to partake in one service opportunity provided by the Robinson Community Learning Center. I chose the Take Ten program. Take Ten is a skills-based conflict resolution program that provides youth and adults with positive alternatives to violence and encourages them to think before they act, building their capacity to make more informed choices when faced with a conflict.
I worked with second-graders at the Boys and Girls Club that I absolutely adored. Teaching was frightening for me at first and very much out of my comfort zone, but when I met the kids, it felt natural.
I was also given the opportunity to go out and explore the city of South Bend and do thorough research on its surprisingly rich and culture-filled history. This class isn’t something that I would have chosen to take originally, but it altered my views for the better and left me with a pleasant experience.
Tell us about your other campus involvement.
I’m a huge advocate for SWE (Society of Women in Engineering). I’ve been in STEM-specific classes since I was in the 4th grade. As I got older, the number of girls in these classes started dwindling until I was the only one left. From seventh grade until I got to college, I was the only female in my engineering courses of 30.
When I was younger, I felt out of place being different which presented many mental obstacles. It took me a while to understand that being different and unique are qualities that the world needs to embrace more of. I was enthralled to learn that Notre Dame had a SWE chapter that consisted of over 500+ female engineers who I could share similar interests and stories with.
I’m also involved with ND E-nable; an organization whose focus is on using the skills taught in Notre Dame classes to be a "force for good in the world." ND E-nable uses bio-design innovation and collaboration to create prosthetic and assistive technologies at a fraction of the cost of standard medical devices for locals of the community in need.
This past year, I worked on a project with a group to design a 3D-printed scope holder. The scope monitors vocal cord dysfunction and the holder attaches to a helmet worn during high-intensity workouts monitored by a speech pathologist. I worked on the initial planning for the project.
I also designed the t-shirt for the American Society of Mechanical Engineers for the 2022-23 school year.
Have you studied abroad or do you plan to? Share the details.
I'm hoping to study abroad through the College of Engineering over the summer of 2023. The course that I am interested in is the 'AME 40498: Special Studies: International Collaborative Industrial Project.' This course is 4-7 weeks long [and] involves research, collaboration, and real-life industry problems.
I'll work alongside students from the Kyushu Institute of Technology to present solutions to industry partners at Yaskawa Electric Corporation. I intend on applying this fall!
Tell us something not everyone knows about you.
I love to share my nationality because it’s usually surprising to others. On my mother’s side, my amah (grandmother) is Taiwaneese, and my grandfather is Hawaiian and Filipino. All of my mom’s cousins, aunts, and uncles reside in Taichung, Taiwan. I spent my fifth birthday there, which is actually the last time I had traveled on an airplane since traveling back to Louisiana from school for Christmas.
What are some items on your ND bucket list?
Run through *the* Reflection Pool in front of Touchdown Jesus on the morning of the first game day
Attend Milkshake Mass at Dillon Hall
Get a selfie with Fr. Pete
Do you have any advice for prospective ND students?
Coming to Notre Dame meant moving across the country where my family is 16 hours away, I went in without knowing anyone, and the climate sure is different from Louisiana…but thankfully campus is beautiful when covered in snow. This past year, I’ve experienced an abundance of new encounters that I had never had the opportunity to before. I was able to experience new ways of living, cultures, and try different foods. I've had the privilege of meeting people from all over the world who are now my absolute best friends. Like my roommate, Esther Lynch (Greater China Scholar), who’s from France and Hong Kong!
I never traveled much before coming to college, but I’ve flown the most I have in my entire life within the last year from going home for Christmas, stopping in Dallas and Atlanta, to a spring break beach trip in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, with my friends that I had met at Notre Dame. I’ve ventured out into South Bend, Elkhart, Mishawaka, Michigan, and even all the way to Chicago, Illinois for Sted’s (St. Edward's Hall)Yacht Dance.
My life at Notre Dame as a freshman was filled with many emotions and new adventures all because I took a chance. So my advice to prospective ND students is, besides finding a Stedsman, to get out of your comfort zone. Always say yes to an opportunity even if it may seem scary at first. Take a chance because you never know what doors will open up for you. And don’t forget to enjoy the journey, because it’s not just about the destination.
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