Meet CET’s Dr. Michelle L. Oyen

Dr. Michelle Oyen

CET’s Department of Engineering has a new associate professor, Dr. Michelle L. Oyen. She mostly will focus on biomedical engineering and some courses in mechanical engineering. She’s a native of Fridley, Minnesota and joins us from the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom.

Here’s a little more about Dr. Oyen. Help us welcome her aboard!

1. What will you be teaching? Biomaterials and biomechanics courses and probably some solid mechanics courses.

2. Why did you choose to come to ECU and CET? It seemed like a really exciting time to join this department.  The strengths of ECU in medical dental, and allied health sciences make it (the CET and Department of Engineering) an extremely attractive place to be working in biomedical engineering, and it’s a challenge and a responsibility to be part of a younger and quickly growing department.

3. What are your areas of research?  Why are you excited about these areas? A lot of my research work is in “biomimetic materials” or materials that are mimicking some aspect of those materials found in nature. The applications of such biomimetic materials could be in all types of nonmedical applications, such as replacing energy-intensive concrete with artificial bone or eggshell, or they could be in medicine, as in tissue engineering of cartilage for severe arthritis.

My final favorite research area is in trying to use bioengineering techniques to study healthy and problem pregnancies.  It is an emerging field that is just starting to gain traction in the larger community (compared with more traditional bioengineering topics in orthopaedics or cardiovascular medicine), and thus is fundamentally very exciting.

4. What would people be surprised to learn about you? I love music and new challenges, so for the last two years, I’ve been learning to play the baroque (alto) recorder.  It will be a while before I play in front of anyone!