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Robert Wesley Ludwig

Normal, Illinois
Robert Ludwig

Major & Graduation

Bioinformatics ~ December 2018

Short-Term Goals

I will continue working toward my undergraduate degree in Bioinformatics, working hard and gaining the knowledge available to me in my time at Illinois Tech. I plan to extend my work in the Computational Chemistry group of the Chemistry department, under Dr. David Minh, where we are developing the tools and methodologies of all-atom molecular-dynamics and molecular docking algorithms. I will continue to perform my personal investigation of the alpha-hemolysin nanopore as a sensing tool, and the applications of existing computational chemistry methods as powerful tools for predicting the interactions between different classes of small molecules and the nanopore. I hope to have this research out for publication within the semester; at that time I will move my focus to supporting the Minh Lab’s Constrained Dynamics Hamiltonian Monte-Carlo (CDHMC) algorithm development. My role in the CDHMC project will be finding and investigating biological systems that can be used as proving-grounds for the tool, as well as participating in the writing of the software. Alongside my research, I will continue to enjoy my role in the Leadership Academy. I particularly look forward to helping the sophomore class develop their leadership potential in my final year of Leadership Retreats as well as continuing as a mentor of robotics with the Opt4STEM Leadership Academy at Von Steuben High School.

Long-Term Goals

After graduating from IIT, I plan to attend a graduate program in the field of scientific computation to develop my understanding of the computational methods underlying the tools of science today; that I may better apply them myself in the future. In my graduate career I aim to develop myself as both an investigator and educator, learning the skills of the modern scientist, as well as how to communicate both my work and those skills and theories that will be needed by the next generation of scientists. Upon completion of my graduate studies, I hope to be accepted as a doctoral candidate in a computational program supporting biochemistry and biophysics. In my life I want to make tools that help us better understand the world around us, tools that can create more knowledge and process more information than any one person could in their lifetime. I also look forward to trying to help other students achieve a greater understanding of their world as an educator in public life, and one who tentatively hopes to remain in academia as a professor one day. 

Leadership Experience

  • Senator - IIT SGA - 2013-14
  • Treasurer - Ethics Bowl IIT - 2013-14
  • Treasurer - UFarm IIT - 2013-14
  • Fundraising Co-Chair - IIT AIAS - 2014
  • Peer Mentor - IIT - 2014-15
  • Student Orientation Leader - IIT - 2014-15
  • Resident Advisor - IIT - 2014-15
  • Second Year Representative - IIT CoA - 2015
  • Director: The Taming of the Shrew - 33rd St. Productions IIT - 2016
  • Senior Resident Advisor - IIT - 2015-16
  • Founding President - Association of I.T. Professionals IIT - 2016-17
  • Mentor: Robotics - Opt4STEM Leadership Academy - 2017-present
  • Undergraduate Research Assistant - IIT/Argonne Natl. Lab BioCat SAXS - 2017
  • Undergraduate Research Assistant - IIT Computational Chemistry Minh Lab -2017-present