Monthly features to profile the next generation of rehab researchers
When Institute Director Dr. Milos R. Popovic introduced the KITE Research Institute to the world two years ago, he had one goal – to redefine and broaden the rehab-specific perception of our work.
The I AM KITE campaign, launched in January, pays tribute to the diverse up-and-coming talent at KITE who are making a huge impact in the world of rehab science.
Today we introduce Sayeh Bayat, a member of our Artificial Intelligence & Robotics in Rehab team. Her passion for helping older adults live more independently sets her up for success to develop solutions for healthy ageing.
I AM SAYEH BAYAT
NAME: Sayeh Bayat
EDUCATION: PhD candidate and B.A.Sc. in Engineering Science, University of Toronto
KITE TEAM: Artificial Intelligence & Robotics in Rehab
RESEARCH FOCUS: Technology and dementia
Sayeh is a biomedical engineering PhD candidate at the University of Toronto, supervised by Prof. Alex Mihailidis. She has a B.A.Sc. degree in Engineering Science (Aerospace Option) from the University of Toronto. Her PhD project integrates methods from biomedical engineering, machine learning, and geographic information science to create context-aware solutions for healthy ageing. Specifically, Sayeh’s research is exploring whether GPS mobility can be used to explain, influence or predict dementia. To date, Sayeh has published five peer-reviewed journal articles and presented seven peer-reviewed projects at refereed conferences.
DEVELOPING TECHNOLOGY TO PROMOTE HEALTH AND INDEPENDENCE OF DEMENTIA PATIENTS
In the future, Sayeh sees herself leading a research team developing technological solutions to support older adults living in smart cities. She will focus on developing mobile health solutions to address the challenges of urbanization and an ageing population. This will give governments new opportunities to rethink their concept of healthcare.
If Sayeh’s research could change one thing in the world by tomorrow, it would be to support older adults living with dementia. It would help them maintain their independence while living in their community for as long as possible. Preventing the premature move from home is important because it will help dementia patients maintain control of their lives.
“KITE has one of the most productive and inspiring research environments, and what drew me to KITE was the cross-disciplinary nature of research that is happening here,” Sayeh says. “It is a true privilege to conduct research in an environment that continuously and purposefully promotes meaningful collaborations across different disciplines.”
“I really enjoy the challenge it offers and the innovation it brings, but what I like most about my research is the research participants,” Sayeh says about why she likes her job. “When the people participating in the project are as excited and invested in your study as you are, that’s when you know something special is happening. I have learned so much from the experiences and stories of our older adult participants.”
SAYEH AND I AM KITE
About the I AM KITE video, Sayeh says, “It shows me that research is the future and that KITE researchers are constantly pushing the frontiers of innovation. It is exciting to be a part of a team and an adventure that can change the face of the future.”
Since Sayeh spends most of her time in front of a computer, she likes to spend her spare time in nature because it gives her the pleasure of living. She enjoys biking and hiking.