Kinesiology Doctoral Students Form New Student Chapter of the American Society of Biomechanics

Jonaz Moreno Jaramillo
Jonaz Moreno Jaramillo

A group of doctoral students in the department of kinesiology has formed the UMass Amherst Student Chapter of the American Society of Biomechanics (ASB).

Biomechanics is the field of study that involves the application of mechanical principles in the study of biological systems. The ASB was founded in 1977 to encourage and foster the exchange of information and ideas among biomechanists working in different disciplines and fields of application, and to facilitate the development of biomechanics as a basic and applied science. It has a membership of almost 1000 academic researchers, clinicians, scientists, students, and industry members working to solve basic and applied problems in the realm of biomechanics and to improve understanding of the workings of biological systems.

Officially approved by the national society, the UMass ASB Chapter is a student-driven organization that intends to increase collaboration and engagement of undergraduate and graduate students who work on projects and ideas related to biomechanics. The chapter’s officers include Jonaz Moreno Jaramillo (chapter president), Sumire Sato, Ross Brancati and Sam Zeff. Professor Katherine Boyer, associate professor, serves as the group’s faculty advisor.

“Our goal is to bring together biomechanics students from various UMass departments, including computer science, mechanical engineering, biomedical engineering, and kinesiology, to strengthen collaboration and improve science communications among students,” says Moreno Jaramillo.

In addition to engaging the campus community, the chapter hopes to build a platform for public engagement and outreach events with the surrounding communities. “We’re actively creating opportunities to promote biomechanics to the younger generations,” he says.

Among their initial activities was a virtual event for high school students from the Holyoke High North Campus on April 16 held in conjunction with National Biomechanics Day. This day is a world-wide celebration of biomechanics intended to increase awareness and appreciation of biomechanics among high school communities around the world. Resources, including classroom and laboratory-based activities, are shared with educators and classes to enhance existing STEM curriculum and bring awareness to different education and career paths.

During the hour-long live session, UMass chapter members presented a variety of demonstrations meant to introduce biomechanics and its many applications to different topic areas.

“We also held breakout rooms to allow students to ask questions. Hopefully we gave them some insight into what it’s like to be a college student and help them plan for their futures,” says Moreno Jaramillo. “We hope to establish an ongoing relationship with some of the local schools to raise awareness of biomechanics for the future generations, with an emphasis on promoting diversity and inclusivity.”

For more information on the UMass ASB Chapter, contact Jonaz Moreno Jaramillo at

Follow the UMass ASB Chapter on Twitter @AsbUmass.

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