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Including JETAA Chicago's first US

Country Representative, Lara (Zara) Espinoza

We would like to congratulate our JETAA Chicago Vice President, Lara (Zara) Espinoza, on being elected to the position of JETAA USA Country Representative (CR) for the 2021-2022 term! We are very proud of you Lara for achieving your dream and we will support you all the way! Read about Lara's accomplishments, experiences and goals in her platform, here.

JETAA USA, under the JETAA International (JETAAi) umbrella, is comprised of 19 chapters across the United States and has three Country Representatives which represent JETAA USA on the national and global levels to the JETAA International community. Country Reps also help to organize the annual JETAA National Conference and check in with chapters nationally and around the world to connect, understand and support JETAA leaders with what is impacting chapter operations.

Our new JETAA USA CRs for 2021-2022 will be:

Connect with our CRs via email countryrep@jetaausa.com and follow JETAA USA on Facebook or Instagram

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Join your fellow alumni for the JETAA Chicago May Open Board Meeting (OBM). Topics for discussion include the Survival Series 2021 and other upcoming virtual events! #JETogether2021

In order to honor the special day....the monthly meeting will be immediately followed by a virtual happy hour with a fun Star Wars twist! The meeting starts at 6:30 pm CST and the Happy Hour will begin around 7:30 pm. The official 'KANPAI' will be at 8 pm. Relax with fellow JETs for a night of laid-back conversation and fun group activities. Join us for one or both!

RSVP for the OBM, Star Wars Nomikai, or both HERE!

Theme (optional): Wear your best Star Wars/Intergalactic space swag!

Our Open Board Meetings are where we get together to discuss events from the past month, any upcoming in the near future, and news relevant to JETAA. Meetings are also a chance for non-board members to share ideas, connect with other alumni and get involved in JETAA Chicago community and activities. Open Board Meetings are for JET alumni only.

If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact the board at info@jetaachicago.com

Looking forward to meeting you, ありがとうございます!

**This Open Board Meeting & Happy Hour is for JET alumni only**

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This Thursday, April 15 from 6-7 PM CST join members of JETAA Chicago - JET Program Alumni of Illinois, Wisconsin & Indiana and the Japan America Society of Chicago (JASC) for a discussion on scientific research in the age of COVID. Suzanne Finucane, Operations Manager of the Center for Bionic Medicine at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, will provide attendees with an inside look into rehabilitation robotics research and how her team has adapted protocol to safely perform studies during the pandemic. She’ll also describe some exciting connections with Japan!

RSVP here!

About the Presentation

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve, workplaces have the daunting task of responding and adapting to the situation as best they can while following federal and state guidelines. In this interactive webinar, Suzanne Finucane, MS, CCRC, PTA of the Regenstein Foundation Center for Bionic Medicine (CBM) at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab will provide an inside look into the evolving world of robotics research at a leading rehabilitation hospital. She will discuss how her group has adapted their research methods in the wake of COVID-19 and also touch on some international research collaborations with Japan led by some of her colleagues. Suzanne’s presentation will be followed by an opportunity for audience Q&A.

About the Speaker

Suzanne Finucane, MS, CRC, PTA currently serves as Operations Manager of the Regenstein Foundation Center for Bionic Medicine (CBM) at the Shirley Ryan AbilityLab, where she oversees operational and financial support for one of the largest translational academic research centers of its kind with more than 60 innovators and staff members. In addition, she is a certified clinical research coordinator and physical therapy assistant, providing research staff with support for research studies focused on improving clinical care and technology for people with upper and lower limb loss.

When COVID-19 became a reality in early 2020, Suzanne helped lead CBM into ways to safely transition scientific research and update staff protocol. As the pandemic continues to rapidly evolve, Suzanne attends weekly huddles with hospital leadership to keep abreast to the latest news and guidelines.

With new safety guidelines in place, researchers within CBM continue to maintain a diverse research portfolio focused on designing and evaluating technologies to improve the quality of life and health of individuals with disabilities. Some recent research activities led by CBM include evaluating the potential of a wearable sensor to track and monitor symptoms of COVID-19, as well as some longstanding international collaborations focused on rehabilitation robotics, including one with Honda in Japan.

Suzanne received a Bachelor of Science in Athletic Training from Butler University, certification in Physical Therapy Assistant training from the University of Indianapolis and a Master of Science in Medical Informatics from Northwestern University. She is a member of the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists and American Physical Therapy Association, among other organizations.

Pictured: Center for Bionic Medicine researchers at work (please note: photo was taken pre-pandemic)

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Japan Exchange & Teaching (JET) Alumni Association of Chicago
Connecting JET alumni in the Midwest - Illinois, Wisconsin, and Indiana