2010-2011 Luce Scholar

Jesse Burk-Rafel, a native of Bainbridge Island, WA, graduated from the University of Washington in 2010 with a BS in bioengineering. At UW, Jesse undertook several independent biomedical research and design projects. He participated in an NIH-sponsored Clinical Research Experience for Engineers program, designing a cancer-targeted magnetic nanoparticle for early detection of tumors. Currently, his research involves developing biosensors for probing host-pathogen interactions, with an emphasis on intestinal diseases afflicting the developing world. Following graduation, Jesse intends to build upon his undergraduate training as a bioengineer to pursue a career as a physician-scientist. Prior to entering an MD/PhD program, he hopes to cultivate an understanding of global healthcare challenges, particularly in the areas of policy, research, therapeutics, and delivery of care. Jesse is interested in Asia’s efforts to meet healthcare challenges and improve patient outcomes. Besides his academic pursuits, Jesse is an avid baker and soccer player. He has also worked as a deckhand on a salmon fishing boat in Alaska for two fishing seasons.