December 6 General Meeting Bios

Human Dynamics and Controls Lab

Liz Hsiao-Wecksler is a Professor and Willett Faculty Scholar in the Department of Mechanical Science and Engineering (MechSE). She is currently MechSE’s Associate Head of Undergraduate Programs. Professor Hsiao-Wecksler directs the Human Dynamics and Controls Laboratory (HDCL). Her research group uses methods from design, control theory, mechatronics, pneumatics and soft robotics, musculoskeletal biomechanics, and movement analysis.  Most recently, she is interested in the development of powered orthoses or exoskeletons that use pneumatics or soft robotics to improve function and the quality of life of persons with disability. Her recent work has been supported by the NSF, NIH, and Dept of Homeland Security. She is co-founder of IntelliWheels, Inc., a Champaign start-up that is developing novel multi-geared wheels for manual wheelchairs to improve propulsion biomechanics and reduce shoulder loading. She is also a Fellow of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME), and Associate Editor for the ASME Journal of Medical Devices.


Center for Innovative Teaching and Learning

Jim Wentworth is an eLearning Professional at the Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning.  He has nearly twenty years of experience in higher education starting in an adjunct teaching position and then transitioning to faculty support roles in both online and face-to-face environments. He is currently working at the intersection of technology and innovative teaching spaces including the design and development of the Illinois Innovation Studio which will open in Summer 2017. Jims interests include educational research, virtual and augmented reality, metacognition and reflective learning, as well as media production and analysis.

Ava Wolf is an eLearning Professional at the Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning where she specializes in active and collaborative teaching strategies and classroom innovations. Ava has been involved in the design and development of iFLEX classrooms on this campus, including the new iFLEX Innovation Classroom, and other learning space projects. She assists faculty and staff in creating hybrid, tech-rich learning activities that take fuller advantage of flexible classrooms, and has been conducting research on teaching and learning in iFLEX and other classroom settings. 

Jamie Nelson is a Senior eLearning Specialist at the Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning at the University of Illinois. He helps Faculty, Staff, and Students explore educational technologies that advance their teaching and learning goals. Jamie specializes in emerging technologies that impact the university, including virtual/augmented reality, 360 video, 3D printing, mobile devices, the internet of things, and more. He oversees the design and programming for the Illinois Innovation TechHub due to open in Summer 2017.