You are here

Current Students


Bill Smart

Dr. Smart

Dr. Smart does research in the areas of robotics and machine learning. In robotics, Smart is particularly interested in improving the interactions between people and robots; enabling robots to be self-sufficient for weeks and months at a time; and determining how they can be used as personal assistants for people with severe motor disabilities. In machine learning, Smart is interested in developing strategies for teaching robots to act effectively (or even optimally), based on long-term interactions with the world and given intermittent and at times incorrect feedback on their performance. 

Bill's OSU Webpage

Cindy Grimm

Dr. Grimm

Dr. Grimm is currently working in the areas of computer graphics and human–computer interaction, including the relationship between shape and biological function, design of interfaces for manipulating and annotating 3D images, and artistic-based modeling and visualization.

Cindy's OSU Webpage


Current Graduate Students

Daniel Lazewatsky

Dan is a doctoral candidate in the Personal Robotics group. Before starting at OSU, he was a member of the Media and Machines Lab at Washington University in St. Louis, previously earning a B.S. in Computer Science from Brandeis University. Dan's current research is focused on lowering the currently high effort required for many people with motor disabilities to perform a variety of everyday tasks. These tasks, termed microinteractions are generally very fast and even unconscious for people without disabilities. This worked stemmed from the Robots for Humanity Project, a collaboration with Willow Garage and the Healthcare Robotics lab at Georgia Tech.


Dan's Personal Webpage

William Curran

Will is a doctoral candidate in the Personal Robotics Group. He received his masters in Multiagent Systems and Decision Making at Oregon State University in 2014 under Dr. Kagan Tumer. He began applying his learning knowledge to real-world robotics in the Personal Robotics Group shortly after under Dr. Bill Smart. Will's current research focuses on developing new learning from demonstration algorithms for individuals with extreme disabilities. These individuals, who arguably need personal robots more than a typical user, cannot use traditional learning from demonstration techniques. Will also dabbles in developing tools for the ROS Ecosystem, developing task-level reinforcement learning applications, and programming awesome robots.


Will's Personal Webpage

Matthew Rueben

Matt is studying for his PhD with the Personal Robotics group. He graduated from Oregon State University in 2013 with the B.S. Degree in Mechanical Engineering. His current research interests include shared autonomy, privacy protection, assistive interfaces for the physically disabled, the social psychology of robot-human interactions, and what he calls value-driven robotics. Raised right here in Corvallis, Oregon, Matt enjoys being outside, reading books, and talking about ideas.  

Matt's Personal Webpage

Kory Kraft

Kory is a Robotics PhD student in the Personal Robotics group at OSU.  He has a B.S. in Computer Science - Mathematics from Furman University in Greenville, SC.  He recently took the long drive across the country with his wife from SC to OR in a lifted 1995 F150 with a trailer in tow.  He is interested in robotic systems that support general health care workers, especially in under resourced environments. Kory’s current research focuses on developing robotic assistants for biohazardous conditions in the medical profession. Simple tasks, such as sheet folding, can be given to the robot to drastically reduce the amount of contact health care professionals have with potentially contagious materials.

Kory's Personal Webpage

Austin Nicolai

Austin is a PhD student in the Personal Robotics Group and Robotic Decision Making Laboratory at Oregon State University. Before coming to OSU, he earned his BS in Electrical Engineering from the Honors College at Washington State University in Pullman, WA. After, he worked as an Electronics Engineer for the Air Force while attending Mercer University in Macon, GA. There, he worked with the Machine Intelligence and Robotics Laboratory while earning his MSE in Electrical Engineering. Austin's previous work has included facial feature extraction, facial emotion categorization, and American Sign Language recognition. His current research interests include deep learning and computer vision in the robotics domain; specifically how these can be leveraged to improve human-robot interaction and automation.

Austin's Personal Webpage

Christopher Eriksen


Chris is a 1st year PhD student in the Personal Robotics Group. Before coming to OSU, he earned his BS in Computer Science from Harvey Mudd College. Chris' previous research has focused on quadrotor localization using monocular vision and visual features for predicting fingerprint quality. His current research interests include the application of machine learning and computer vision to personal robotics.

Chris' Personal Webpage



Current Undergraduate Research Assistants

Benjamin Narin

Benjamin is an undergraduate at Oregon State double majoring in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. His primary research interest is in Assistive Robotics, robots to help those with extreme disabilities accomplish tasks for themselves. In the future, he plans on pursuing a MS or PhD in robotics.

Cameron Bowie

Cameron is an undergrad at Oregon State University. He is currently a senior majoring in Computer Science and Mathematics. His interests are focused on computer vision and robotic path planning. In the future, he is planning on pursuing a MS or PhD in robotics.

Duy Nguyen

Duy is a senior in Computer Science with minors in Mathematics and Psychology. He is interested in the interactions between humans and machines. In particular, he wants to figure out how to detect basic human emotions, so robots can interact with people based on those emotions. In the future, he plans to continue his research and pursue a MS or PhD in Robotics.

Jasper LaFortune

Jasper is majoring in Computer Science with a focus on Psychology. He aspires to teach someday, and is interested in how both humans and machines learn. When he looks at computers and people, he wonders two things: how can something so smart act so dumb, and how can something so dumb be so smart?

Benjamin Arvey

Ben is a Computer Science undergraduate at Oregon State University. His research primarily focuses on information visualization and using hardware peripherals to improve the depth and ease of human-robot interaction. Besides robotics, Ben works with technology education programs for middle and high school students.

Nicholaus Perry


Nicholaus Perry is an undergraduate at Oregon State University with a major in Mechanical Engineering and a minor in Computer Science. Nicholaus' prior research includes work on the GENI liquid hydrogen UAV, advanced boat hull designs tensioning of a large scale artificial spider web and autonomous battery changers. His current work focuses on creating intuitive and efficient physical controls for industrial robots. In the future, he plans on pursuing a MS or PhD in robotics.

Summer Undergraduate Research Assistants - 2015

Patrick Hansen, Notre Dame, Indiana. Computer Science.

Steven Huerta, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, South Dakota. Computer Science.

Tiffany Chu


Summer Undergraduate Research Assistants - 2014

Suzanne Dazo, Berea College, Kentucky. Computer Science.

Alexander Hubers, Cornell College, Iowa. Computer Science.

Leo Biggs, Massachusetts. Robotics.

Thomas Thornton, Colby College, Maine. Computer Science.