When I visited Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), I heard that a group of Massachusetts Gamma members were rehearsing a dance routine in preparation for “SK Late Night,” which is a talent show event held by Sigma Kappa sorority. One of the choreographers is sophomore Iva Gramatikov, who is also a member of the MIT Dance Troupe. She loves the opportunity to perform at the end of semester shows as well as SK Late Night because it’s such fun ways to showcase her talent. One would assume While Iva spends a lot of her time in rehearsals, when she is not in dance practice or representing Pi Phi at Fraternity and Sorority Life events, she can be found in a research lab.
MIT is passionate about providing everyone a chance to do research, so Iva began her freshman year and has been there since. In fact, she spends a lot of time in the lab, approximately 10–12 hours a week, conducting research.
Iva’s work is based around modeling and analyzing the cardiovascular system, specifically Coarctation of the Aorta, which is the narrowing of the aorta. When a doctor performs a surgery to try to open the aorta by inserting an artificial valve, Iva assists in creating pre- and post-surgery computer-generated model of each patient’s aorta. This is done in order to understand what happens mechanically and to analyze the left ventricle flow. Iva’s focus is to gain a better understanding of the disease and to improve the surgery in the future. Knowing she would be conducting hands-on research and making an immediate impact in the field is something that attracted Iva to MIT.
So what advice does a sister with so many different interests give to other Pi Phi? “Try as many things as possible,” Iva said. “You may be surprised what thing you enjoy.”
I continue to be impressed by my Pi Phi sister’s abilities to be involved in so many areas on their campus and communities. Thank you Iva for being another example of a collegiate woman balancing multiple passions.