A 4+1 Student’s Journey from Campus Leader to Industry Researcher

After emerging as a student leader as an undergraduate, Shaylyn Westmoreland ’24 used her graduate student experience researching ways to early diagnose MS and gained national industry exposure in the process. 

Shaylyn Westmoreland smiles for a photo at an industry research conference.
Shaylyn Westmoreland
Class of 2023 and 2024
Biomedical Engineering
  • School of Engineering
Career Plan: Biomedical engineer

On Widener’s Chester campus, there is no shortage of ways to get involved for students. 

From student organizations, student-faculty research projects, co-op and internships, students can mix and max based on their interests and goals. 

That’s exactly what Shaylyn Westmoreland’s ’24 did when she came to Widener.

“I am a very determined person and I knew that I wanted to get the most out of my experience,” said Shaylyn.

The 4+1 biomedical engineering student compiled meaningful undergraduate experiences that not only made her a celebrated student leader, but positioned her to excel in the the biomedical engineering industry.

A well-rounded student

During her co-op and senior year research project, Shaylyn partnered with Terumo Medical Corporation, one of the world's leading manufacturers of medical devices and supplies. The industry collaboration was a tremendous learning experience for Shaylyn that blended classroom lessons with real-world application.

“I loved having the opportunity to do research, but also having the opportunity to collaborate with a company – that’s something that you don't see quite often,” said Shaylyn. 

In addition to her academic engagement, Shaylyn was active in student life across campus. She worked as an RA, was president of the Black Student Union (BSU), served on the National Society of Black Engineers, and joined Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated, just to name a few. 


While at Widener, I had my hand in a lot of different things and that helped me not only to manage an intensive workload but also sharpen my skills in communicating and presenting."

Shaylyn’s involvement on campus shaped her personal trajectory and led her to be recognized by university leaders and be named Leader of the Year Award for her role as president of BSU. 

An interdisciplinary approach to preventative care

Shaylyn’s graduate thesis project focused on using artificial intelligence (AI) to early diagnose patients who have multiple sclerosis (MS). 
The project’s multidisciplinary topic, blending biomedical and robotics engineering, appealed to Shaylyn who was excited to explore AI in medical research and contribute to a widespread disease. 

I chose this project not only because it’s fascinating to use AI, that’s something I’ve never worked with before, but also I have family members that are impacted by MS. I want to be able to do research and hopefully help when it comes to providing research to the field.

With support from her advisor Daniel Roozbahani, assistant professor of robotics engineering, Shaylyn gained experience in reading and editing MRI images as well as developing AI code to identify targeted biomarkers. According to Shaylyn, the interdisciplinary work and support from her advisor was transformational.

“Professor Roozbahani has definitely been very encouraging and inspiring and challenges me to pursue different forms of research, and even pursue a doctoral degree.”

National industry exposure

Roozbahani’s encouragement led Shaylyn to submit her work to national, industry-leading conferences such as the Americas Committee for Treatment and Research and Multiple Sclerosis. Her abstract research was accepted and she was invited to the committee’s annual forum to present her research.

“It helped me learn how to network with people and really helped me to understand what technical research in the field of engineering looks like as well, and opened my eyes to what engineering looks like beyond the collegiate space,” said Shaylyn.

Presenting alongside doctoral candidates and industry leaders, while intimidating, challenged Shaylyn to grow personally and professionally. 

“I’m more introverted, a more reserved person, but putting myself in these spaces where I have to communicate with people and have to be personable and learn how to navigate certain social situations has helped me grow and blossom,” said Shaylyn.

Career Plan: Biomedical engineer

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