Impact Award, Spring 2022
Anson Kwan was drawn to the robotics and autonomous systems program at the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University because of his prior robotics experience in high school.
He believes “the best part of engineering is being able to solve complex and nuanced problems in a creative and thoughtful way.”
During his time at ASU, he had the opportunity to study at both the Tempe and Polytechnic campuses. This experience paired with the hands-on and project-based curriculum made Fulton Schools the ideal choice for him.
Kwan, a student in ASU’s Barrett, The Honors College, took into consideration the future landscape of the robotics field when he chose his major and says “robotics represents the future to bridging robotic and human interactions.”
With a strong robotics background, Kwan decided to take on robotics research under Tom Sugar, professor of engineering and associate dean of Barrett, The Honors College, where he developed an exoskeleton for able-bodied individuals as part of an independent research study for the U.S. Air Force.
“Dr. Sugar was a huge impact on me,” Kwan says. “I was able to get all of my research opportunities through him and he made my experience at ASU special.”
Kwan continued down the research path and joined the Fulton Undergraduate Research Initiative, where he developed a swimming robot inspired by eel movements under Daniel Aukes, an assistant professor of engineering. This research also served as fuel for his honors thesis.
His thesis research is in the process of being published for a conference paper — an accomplishment he says “is one of his biggest achievements over the course of my college experience.”
Kwan will continue his robotics studies in the 4+1 accelerated master’s degree program at ASU with long-term plans to rejoin his family in the Los Angeles area.
His career goals include linking robotics with food sustainability.
“Currently, I’m not sure how I want to bridge the gap between engineering and food sustainability,” Kwan says, “but I want to make a positive impact in this area which I’m passionate about.”