John Martin:
Science and Math

John Martin is making his mark on the scientific research world. The 2024 Lorain County Community College graduate was one of four students selected to work on a biomedical engineering research project, led by LCCC professor Regan Silvestri, Ph.D. The National Science Foundation-backed project leveraged computer modeling to evaluate proposed design modifications to surgical implant devices used in the treatment of pediatric scoliosis.  

Martin, 20, of Oberlin, was recognized in spring 2023 with the Ohio Academy of Science Undergraduate Research Award for his contributions. And in fall 2023, he received a NASA/Ohio Space Grant Consortium Community College to continue his research. He then presented his work at the NASA/Ohio Space Grant Consortium Student Research Symposium at the NASA Glenn Space Center in March 2024. And it’s being published in the Ohio Space Grant Consortium Student Research Symposium Proceedings. 

“John’s not only an amazing student, he’s also an amazing person,” Silvestri said. “As we worked through our research project, John seemed to have a natural gut instinct as to what was the right thing to do as we solved this curious engineering puzzle of a project.” 

Martin didn’t anticipate the recognition.  

“I was surprised,” he said. “Being part of the research was something that I knew would be useful and it was fun to do. I felt very honored.” 

Helping others through science and technology is what seems to drive Martin, who’s graduating with an associate of science in universal science. He’s already enrolled in The University of Toledo’s Computer Science and Engineering program through LCCC’s University Partnership and plans to earn his Ph.D. after that.  

Then he wants to help kids understand and enjoy math.  

“I’d like to take my computer science and math skills and create an app that uses videogames and AI to better teach math at the K-12 to introductory college math levels,” he said.  

Martin is also open to being a college professor one day. He’s already got a start on his learning philosophies when it comes to math and science.  

“I like the idea of exploring different mathematical concepts and building this portfolio of skills,” he said. “I don’t like that idea that you need to have this prerequisite or be at this grade level. If you build up a certain amount of arithmetic and algebra proficiency, students should be prompted to try some new concepts.” 

Martin knows that trying new things can be tough. He said most of his barriers at LCCC came in the way of those “scary but vital firsts.” 

“The first time failing a large assignment, the first time holding a job, and the first time I had to withdraw from a class, were all firsts that were difficult, but vital,” he said. “Change is scary, but also constant, and it’s important to learn how to achieve success despite the failures and the intimidating changes.”  

One of Martin’s most memorable firsts was day one of serving as Executive Secretary of LCCC’s Student Senate.  

“The fact that I was being paid to be there made me question all of my actions,” he said. “With every step I asked, ‘Am I doing this well enough to justify being paid to do this?’”  

Martin, who now serves as Student Senate Vice President, seems to have a thoughtful, introspective approach to every action he takes – big or small. It’s a quality that, when paired with his aptitude for math, science and technology, should bode well for humanity. It likely already is. 

“I want to spend my career working on something that I think is incredible, but it is also very impactful as well,” he said.