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Rob MacLeod

Title: Professor
College: Engineering
School / Department: Bioengineering
Mentoring Philosophy:

I became a University instructor in 1980 and have been a professor with teaching and mentoring responsibilities since 1992. I also have over 30 years of experience as a researcher and in developing software for biomedical simulation, image based modeling, and visualization. I am also a user of such software as it supports my cardiac and neural electrophysiology research, in which I carry out experiments, human studies, and computer simulations. In 1995, I was one of two co-founder of the Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute and have been its associate director ever since (we now include 18 faculty and 175 members). I am also the Co-PI of the NIH funded Center for Integrative Biomedical Computing (CIBC), which has received support since 1999 to create biomedical software. During this time, the CIBC has had a major impact on many biomedical research projects, one of which led to the creation of the Comprehensive Arrhythmia Research and Management (CARMA) Center, where we used image-based analysis to manage patients with cardiac arrhythmias. I continue to pursue synergistic research on all aspects of cardiac electrophysiology and bioelectric fields based on imaged based modeling, simulation, and visualization. Finally, for the past 20 years, I have been the interim co-director and now associate director of the Cardiovascular Research and Training Institute (CVRTI), a center of over 50 people dedicated to cardiac electrophysiology research across all scales. My mentorship approach and my role in this proposal reflect my many years of experience pursuing this research as well as educating students, post doctoral fellows, and junior faculty in the application of experimental, clinical, and computer modeling approaches. In my time since 1992 as a teacher at the University of Utah, I developed 6 different courses for students in biomedical engineering, many of which are also popular with pre-medical students and graduate students alike. I have developed graduate level Biomedical Engineering tracks in both Computation and Cardiac Electrophysiology & Biophysics and have directed the undergraduate program in Biomedical Engineering and Vice Chair in BME for over 10 years. From 2015-2020, I served as our College of Engineering representative on the MD/PhD program committee, which includes both admissions and mentorship/advising roles. I now serve on our College Equality, Diversity, and Inclusivity Committee. My teaching reviews have placed me in the top 15% of our College of Engineering on several occasions. I am a passionate advocate of novel teaching and advising practices and constantly seek ways to improve the effectiveness of instruction at our institution. For the past 8 months, I have organized biweekly meetings of all the instructors in BME in order to revise and adapt our practices to the challenging constraints of the COVID-19 pandemic. I advise all the students in our undergraduate BME program (90 new admissions per year) and guide them to successful careers in industry, academic research, and medicine. I have also mentored 22 graduate students (as main advisor) to their degrees, 120 more as a member of an advisor committee, and currently sit on 25 advisor committees. I have served as a mentor for an NIH K23 award and been part of the mentoring team on several T32 awards in the School of Medicine.