My Learning Journey

By Shruti Sivaraman | August 18, 2023

Hi everyone, this is Shruti Sivaraman and welcome to my fifth and final blog post!

One of the most exciting things I did through the 3M Young Scientist mentorship journey was talking to opthalmologists, local clinicians and diabetic patients about my project to see their point of view. But one of the most important point of views was my 3M scientist mentor, Dr. Kannan Seshadri! Getting to work with a 3M scientist was something I was excited about right from the beginning. Having a 3M scientist meant that I could discuss and get critiqued by someone who has experience with solving real world problems.

Dr. Kannan, my mentor, has helped me sort and organize my ideas. We meet every week or sometimes even twice a week if needed so when I am stuck on things, discussing it through with someone experienced like Dr. Kannan helps me see a new perspective on the problem. For different parts of my project I would come up with plans and ideas on what and how I want to test out. Dr. Kannan would patiently listen to all of these and provide his views on how to make something simpler or more understandable for my app and my device. He also has good knowledge of all the products that 3M has designed, so I really appreciate him helping me understand several of them.

The most challenging part about my project is finding alternate solutions when I don’t always have access for testing the device. I have found a tool that helps me make a ray diagram for a condensing lens. This tool helps in a lot of other ways but being able to visualize everything was the main part and it was extremely helpful in calculating all the distances and measurements I needed.

Something more I have been working extensively on is making my app work smoothly. At the beginning, I would run the model and see what it would do, with the goal of improving accuracy. But now, with all the summer interactions with my 3M mentor and ophthalmologists, I have made it a more user friendly and give a clean diagnosis for the patient. I am working on some final touches to the app and device but otherwise it’s been satisfying to finally see all of the ideas I had been thinking about finally start to become a real world product.

I am so grateful to be a part of the 3M Young Scientist Challenge and the summer mentorship. This has really helped me expand my project and having a mentor like Dr. Kannan has pushed me to make my project even better.

Thank you for following me on this journey and reading my blogs! I am so excited to learn about the other finalists in future meet-ups. A big thank you to Dr. Kannan for being an amazing mentor for me this summer.

I hope you all have great day, I will see you in my improving lives video!

~ Shruti