Jenna White


Suwanee, GA

Academic Interests

I am interested in studying biomedical engineering, computer science, and/or natural sciences, particularly biology and chemistry.

Fun Fact

95% of my personality has come from watching too much Spongebob growing up.

All of my life, I have found inspiration from being part of a team. From kindergarten to my senior year of high school, my home was a softball field, where I connected with others that were very different from me in order to achieve a common goal. My passion for science, particularly in engineering, came from this love for being on a team.

During my junior year of high school, my friends and I worked together to develop a device treating arthritis in the hand: a gadget that ended up being an oddly shaped plastic box with buttons on the top for a person to press on, defective vibrating motors inside to massage the hand, and a bulging sock filled with rice as a heating pad attached to it. With this unattractive contraption, I was led to professional interviews at the Georgia state science fair and later led to a free trip to Pittsburgh with great lessons about cooperation and innovation at the international science fair. Throughout all of this, I learned that science encompasses a beautiful world of opportunity, and that even the smallest ideas can make an impact. As a result, I aspire to use cooperation in order to solve problems and develop more ideas, leading me to engineering.

Furthermore, this past year, I interned at a physical therapy clinic, where I witnessed the use of various devices in strengthening muscles such as the shoulders, knees, and respiratory muscles. Through this experience, my eyes were opened to the benefits that engineering can have on the lives of those in pain.

As a result of science’s impact on my life and others, as well as my past invigorating experiences with STEM, I am very interested in finding ways that improvements in drugs and technology can help treat physical and mental disorders. Particularly, I aspire to imburse myself in research and analysis, particularly in drug and gene delivery as well as the effect that technological innovations can have on the treatment of illnesses.

What do you like about being a SPIRE Fellow?

As an individual that is very introverted, I love that SPIRE Fellows gives the opportunity to push myself to put myself out there in order to obtain the immense opportunities that are available to me, both on and off Duke’s campus. Also, I greatly appreciate having an extensive support group and being surrounded by gifted individuals with similar interests to mine.

White headshot.
Jenna White