On November 7, Dean Kamen, inventor of the Segway PT, visited UConn for the first time. He delivered the Lawrence G. Raisz, M.D. Lectureship, an event hosted by the Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science (CICATS) and UConn School of Engineering in the Student Union of the Storrs campus. Over 300 people, including students, faculty, researchers, public officials and community-based organizations attended. In his keynote entitled “Innovation: Past, Present and Future”, Dean urged the young people present to keep following their dreams and shared an overview of projects he and his engineers at DEKA Research have been working on. He also discussed FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology), a program for students to get them interested in science, technology, and engineering he and his partners started in 1989 and continue supporting today.
In addition to the Segway, Dean invented the iBOT all-terrain wheelchair as well as several biomedical devices. He has also developed a water purification system he hopes will help improve living standards in developing countries He has received the U.S. Medal of Technology and the ASME Medal, the American Society of Mechanical Engineer’s highest honor. Dean holds more than 440 U.S. and foreign patents.
As the CEO of CICATS, I thank everyone at CICATS for their hard work organizing Dean’s visit over the past months. I also thank the School of Engineering at UConn Storrs for co-hosting this event.