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Meet The Team

Director Interprofessional
Projects Program

IPRO Program Coordinator

Idea Shop Lab Manager

Academic Director

Idea Shop Lab Technician

Managing Director

Adjunct Professor, IPRO

Student Tech
Media Associate

Executive Director

Program Manager

Adjunct Professor, IPRO


Maryam Saleh, PhD is currently executive director of the Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship at Illinois Tech. She is passionate about moving ideas into the market, where it can have impact and improve lives. She has held leadership roles at several startups including Machinify, a venture-backed startup that's applying AI to bend the cost curve in healthcare and Cyberkinetics Neurotechnology Systems, a medical device company that used brain implants and machine learning to restore movement in quadriplegic individuals. She has also helped launch and accelerate startups through her founding roles at Northwestern’s Center for Device Development and MATTER, a business development hub for over 200 cutting-edge health tech startups. In 2016, Maryam was recognized as a Crain’s 40 under 40.

Maryam currently lives in Chicago with her husband Dr. Jason MacLean and children Rhys and Tiah. Born in London, raised in Canada, Maryam earned a Bachelor of Science in Computer Engineering from Brown University and, a Ph.D. in Computational Neuroscience from University of Chicago.

Jeremy Alexis (BArch '97, MDes '99) is a senior lecturer at the Institute of Design and the director of Illinois Tech’s Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) Program. Alexis teaches ID’s core design process class and co-teaches the biomedical engineering design capstone. He is the lead faculty for the Institute of Design’s executive education program, working with organizations such as FedEx, Ford, Nestle Purina, Hitachi Data Systems, The Kresge Foundation, and Leadership Greater Chicago. He conducts research in health care and criminal justice reform with partners including the American Bar Association, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and the Sheriff of Cook County. Before joining Illinois Tech in 2005, he worked at the design/innovation firms Gravity Tank (now part of Salesforce) and Doblin (now part of Deloitte).

Jeremy holds a Bachelor of Architecture from Illinois Institute of Technology and Master of Design from the Institute of Design.

Akshar Patel (CE '13) is managing director at the Ed Kaplan Family Institute for Innovation and Tech Entrepreneurship (Kaplan Institute). His work includes leadership training, university enrollment, fundraising and non-profit development. He is an adjunct faculty member of the Interprofessional Projects (IPRO) prorgam at Illinois Tech. His class focuses on human-centered design for developing countries. Patel has worked on projects in Nicaragua to provide housing and education to communities in need. He is currently on the board of FNE International, an organization that partners with communities in developing nations to identify opportunities to advance housing, health and education. Before joining Kaplan Institute, Patel held roles in Career Services and Institutional Advancement at Illinois Tech and worked in enrollment at Champlain College in Burlington, VT.

Akshar holds a Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering from Illinois Institute of Technology and a Master of Education from the University of Vermont.