Doctoral Candidate Invents Assistive Technology

November 14th, 2017

4.0 GPA Doctoral Candidate at the University of Maryland, Kavita Krishnaswamy, never showed up to her scheduled defense of her dissertation before the panel of senior academics.

She sent her robot instead. Did we mention she was operating it from 16 miles away?

Krishnaswamy lives with spinal muscular atrophy, a rare genetic disorder that causes the breakdown of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord which prevents the brain from sending messages that direct muscle movement. Krishnaswamy designs robotic devices to allow people with severe disabilities to move their arms and legs simply by moving a computer trackball, speaking or changing their facial expressions. She is pursuing a doctorate in computer science.

Visit to learn more about Kavita, her disability, and her drive to change the world.