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In Summer 2018, as part of AUC’s Undergraduate Research Program, Belquis Haider ’19, mechanical engineering graduate and a recipient of the Tomorrow’s Leaders Scholarship, interned with the University of Leeds in the United Kingdom. Working on a research titled HAILO, Haider aimed to develop a product to be used by healthcare providers in the United Kingdom to evaluate the forces between the hand and splints worn by patients suffering from base-of-thumb osteoarthritis — a painful inflammatory condition that affects the joints of around 8.75 million people in the United Kingdom annually and millions of people worldwide. According to the World Health Organization’s global estimates, 9.6% of men and 18% of women aged over 60 years old have symptomatic osteoarthritis. WHO also states that 80% of those with osteoarthritis have limitations in movement, and 25% can’t perform their major daily activities of life.

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