Brinkerhoff named Outstanding Doctoral Student

Published: March 20, 2023

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School of Kinesiology doctoral candidate Sarah Brinkerhoff was named one of Auburn University’s Outstanding Doctoral Students for 2022-2023. Brinkerhoff was selected by a special committee of the Graduate Council for the quality of record she has established at Auburn and reflects exception and positive credibility on her advisor, Dr. Jaimie Roper, and the School of Kinesiology.

“Being recognized as one of Auburn's Outstanding Doctoral Students is a great honor. It validates my passion and dedication for my research and represents an acknowledgement of my work during my time at Auburn, and it pays respect to the great mentorship of my advisor, Dr. Roper,” Brinkerhoff said. “This honor could also open doors for opportunities and collaborations in my future in the field.”

Roper, associate professor and director of the Locomotor and Movement Control Lab, serves as Brinkerhoff’s primary advisor, dissertation chair, and nominator for the Outstanding Doctoral Student recognition.

“Sarah quickly became vital to my research agenda because of her drive, and her research focus specifically aligns with Auburn’s strategic research vision and commitment to improve health and health care in Alabama and across the nation,” Roper said. “Sarah’s unique skill sets paired with her impressive output will greatly influence the field of gait rehabilitation and understanding of the brain's control of walking.”

At the beginning of her doctoral program, Brinkerhoff was awarded a prestigious Presidential Fellowship from Auburn to develop her career as a scholar in the field of biomechanics and aging.

Upon completion of her doctoral program, Brinkerhoff hopes to continue work as a data scientist in a health-adjacent field.

“I currently work with the University of Alabama at Birmingham Department of Neurology as a data scientist, and I really enjoy what we do there,” she said. “I plan to keep working with big data management and doing data analysis in clinical populations.”

Brinkerhoff and other Outstanding Doctoral Student recipients will be honored at the Graduate School’s Awards ceremony scheduled on Friday, April 28 at 3 p.m. in the Melton Student Center Ballroom.