Laleh Boroujerdi-Rad

1. What is your specific area of research (include the name of your faculty and/or laboratory)?

I have co-created and designed an Interactive Audio/Visual Broadcasting Studio for the University Children’s Hospital at UCI. Young patients will have the opportunity to regain some control over their immediate environment during their stay at the hospital as they engage in the activities the studio offers. The project is dedicated to reducing anxiety, boredom, and pain scores, introducing health education, and empowering children with a sense of autonomy within hospital confines. On February 13th, 2003, my partner and I were awarded a $25,000 grant from Hyundai Motor America for our vision; since that time, the project has snowballed into a multidisciplinary collaboration including members from the University Children’s Hospital, UCI College of Medicine, UCI School of the Arts, and KUCI. Dr. Feizal Waffarn, Chairman of Pediatrics and Ms. Jill Beck, former Dean of School of the Arts have generously invested their time, guidance, and resources in the development of this project.

2. When and how did you first get involved in research?

My partner, Shahrdad Lotfipour introduced me to the concept of developing a Radio Show after his exposure to a children’s radio show at Royal Brisbane Children’s Hospital in Australia. Together we wrote a proposal to start a similar initiative in California, making it the third of its kind in the United States. UCI will be the first children’s radio show in the United States to research the palliative impact the show has on pediatric patients.

3. How has research enhanced your education?

This experience has enhanced my education greatly. I have met so many incredible individuals that have inspired me over the last year. My personal and scholastic growth from these relationships is truly immeasurable. I am very fortunate to have had this opportunity.

4. What has been your favorite experience with research (include any interesting stories or specific events)?

I have really loved getting to know so many UCI faculty members. Building personal relationships with individuals that I have always respected and admired from a far has been an unbelievable experience; their encouragement and support in my endeavors has meant so much to me.

5. What are your future plans and how has being involved in research helped to prepare you to meet your goals?

My future plans include graduate study in the field of management and higher education. I look forward to working on a college campus someday. I owe my newfound enthusiasm and passion for working with students to the interactions I have had working on the Broadcasting Studio Project.

6. What advice would you give to a student interested in pursuing a faculty-mentored undergraduate research project or creative activity?

Without a doubt, just do it. It will turn out to be one of the most worthwhile experiences you can engage in as a collegiate student. It gives you the opportunity to apply what you have learned at UCI in a practical manner.

Past Researchers of the Month
Dec. '04 Martin Vega
Nov. '04 Peter Kuo
Oct. '04 Michelle Plyer
Sep. '04 Camille Campion
Aug. '04 Ahmed Ibrahim
Jul. '04 Gregoria Barazandeh
Jun. '04 Matthew Korn
May '04 Jolene Minakary
Apr. '04 Zhanna Kovaleva
Mar. '04 Dorothy Chang
Feb. '04 Elizabeth Yanni
Jan. '04 Brad Cohn
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