Colleen Witzenburg

Principal Investigator

Ph.D., University of Minnesota
Postdoc, University of Virginia

Colleen is fascinated by the complexity and adaptability of cardiovascular soft tissues. She is interested in how the heart, vessels, and valves remodel and grow both temporally and spatially in response to disease. Colleen runs on curiosity and chocolate and loves jogging with her dog and gaining new computational skills.

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Graduate Students

Ashley Hiebing

Ashley’s research involves computational modeling of cardiovascular growth and remodeling in hypoplastic left heart syndrome. When not in the lab, she enjoys drawing, creative writing, and learning foreign languages.

Daniel Pearce

Daniel’s research explores spatial heterogeneity in the material properties of infarct myocardium through mechanical testing and computational modeling. In his free time, he enjoys being active, creative writing, and all things music.

Callyn Kozitza

B.S., Minnesota State University – Mankato
M.S., University of Wisconsin – Madison

Callyn’s research involves developing a customizable computational model of pulmonary artery growth in hypoplastic left heart syndrome. Outside of the lab, she enjoys spending time with friends and family (and cat, Louis), crocheting, and true crime podcasts.

Cate Eberman

B.S., Smith College
M.S., Boston University

Cate’s research focuses on characterizing structural heterogeneity of myocardium via imaging modalities, and its effects on regional mechanical properties. In her spare time she enjoys sailing, gardening, and skiing.

Undergraduate Students

Francisco O’Neill Rodriguez

Francisco’s research involves collating studies on myocardial infarction in rats in order to fit and validate a population model of ventricular remodeling and heart failure risk. In his free time he enjoys going to the beach, riding his bike outdoors and spending time with friends and family.

Mark Nemcek

Mark’s research is centered on biaxially testing soft tissues. Specifically, he is interested in methods of applying texture for digital image correlation based strain tracking approaches. Outside of lab Mark enjoys sports, nature, and travel.

Connor Link

Connor is implementing a polarization spectrometer to visualize collagen realignment in real time under dynamic loading of soft tissues. Using this system we will be able to quantify interactions between dynamic alignment and a tissue’s mechanical properties. Outside of lab, he enjoys hiking, camping, and any time spent outdoors.

Michael Chiariello

Michael’s research focuses on developing a reliable protocol to generate shear stress in tissue samples during biaxial testing. In his free time, he enjoys golfing and playing basketball with friends.

Shreya Sreedhar

Shreya is generating a protocol for the laser micrometer to produce consistent, low-noise 3D images of soft tissue samples.

Laboratory Alum

Elizabeth Gunderson, B.S. (Boston Scientific)

ChaMee Vang, B.S. from St. Olaf University

Kurt Vanderheyden, B.S. (GE Healthcare)

Riley Pieper, B.S. (University of Michigan PhD Program)