Welcoming New PostDoc, Jenn Cross, to Tufts CEEO

By Jennifer Cross, Postdoctoral Research Associate

Welcoming New PostDoc Pic
Jennifer, at the CREATE Lab, with a Hummingbird Kit robot that she created for teacher professional development workshops.

Jennifer Cross, Ph.D., is a new Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Center for Engineering Education and Outreach  (CEEO) where her primary research interests include investigating human-robot interaction in education contexts, developing novel programming interfaces for educational robots, and supporting diversity in engineering education. At the CEEO, she is teaching a course for the Teacher Engineering Education Program (TEEP) called Engineering and Science for Middle and High School Educators and working with Professor Chris Rogers on a number of research projects around robot programming. She is also helping to make improvements to the Human Factors Engineering program at Tufts.

Welcome New PostDoc Pic 2
Jennifer in her sixth-grade science fair presenting School-Bot, a robot courier for schools, built with LEGO MINDSTORMS. She is still interested in developing robots for schools almost two decades later.

Jennifer joins the CEEO after completing her M.S. and Ph.D. in Robotics within the Community Robotics, Education, and Technology Empowerment (CREATE) Lab at Carnegie Mellon University where she worked to develop the Arts & Bots Program, a creativity-oriented, middle school robotics program using the Hummingbird Robotics Kit. Dr. Cross was a fellow of both the Institute of Education Sciences supported Program for Interdisciplinary Education Research and the National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellowship Program.

Jennifer’s interest in robotics started at a young age while she was growing up in rural central Pennsylvania watching robot movies, such as “Short Circuit.” However, a LEGO MINDSTORMS kit was what really cemented her passion for robotics. This passion eventually led her to study electrical and computer engineering at Olin College in Needham, MA. Outside of robotics, Jennifer also loves reading, gardening, painting, and creating fused glass art.