Fellow:Kanika Gakhar

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Kanika Gakhar is a University Innovation Fellow and a junior Aerospace Engineering student at Texas A&M University. She is am a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) Aero Design Team as a part of which she gets to design and build a radio-controlled aircraft and compete in an international competition annually. Last year, she competed in the SpaceX Hyperloop Design Competition as well. She is also an Executive Leader for Council of Undergraduate Research in Engineering. As a passionate seeker of leadership, she has served as President of Lambda Sigma Sophomore Honor Society, Director of Focus Groups for the MSC Fall Leadership Conference, Undergraduate Leadership Scholar, and Maroon & White Leadership Fellow. Apart from academics, leadership, and research, she loves to dance. She has been dancing since the age of five and learned a variety of dance forms ranging from Indian Classical and Bollywood to Hip-Hop and B-Boying. She is currently a member of the TAMU Belly Dance Association. She works as a volunteer column writer for a non-profit organization called iNEducation and serves as a volunteer workshop leader at Krause Children Center. She is also very passionate about literature, art and craft, and social activism. She started doing research her freshman year by joining a group project that focused on designing deployable solar panels for a CubeSat with the help of Shape Memory Alloys. This summer, she participated in the Undergraduate Summer Research Grant Program by joining the Advanced Vertical Flight Laboratory and working on improving the efficiency of a Robotic Hummingbird because she wanted to work on analyzing how nature and technology can intermingle and lead to the creation of a bio-inspired aerial vehicle. Engaging in undergraduate research has widened her perspective and given her room to exercise her creativity in a field that loves scientific formulae and numbers. Moreover, it has helped her overcome her fear of trying new things and encouraged her to keep working on expanding her boundaries.