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Sahray standing with computer and equipment, in front of charts and photos of her research about cochlear implants.
Sahray Gambaro
Hometown: Carolina, Puerto Rico
Current City: Mayagüez, Puerto Rico
Education: BS student, Computer Engineering, University of Puerto Rico, Mayagüez
Hobbies: Reading, shopping, the movies, and the beach.
Fun Fact: "I love to dance salsa!"

I develop software for a cochlear implant that will help people who are deaf to hear.

—Sahray Gambaro

Opening up the world of sound
A cochlear implant is a surgically implanted electronic device that helps provide a sense of sound to a person who is deaf or severely hard-of-hearing. It can benefit children and adults who have lost their hearing as well as people who are born deaf. "They're very different from hearing aids," explains Sahray. "A hearing aid amplifies sound, but the implants work by electrically stimulating the cochlear nerve."

What's her passion?
Expanding the lives of people with disabilities. "The best part of the job is knowing that every code I'm developing is going to help somebody. It can give a person with hearing loss a new way to connect with family, friends, and the world. For those who were born deaf, imagine what it must be like to hear birds or the sea for the first time."

How she got interested in computing
"I took a technology class in the 9th grade. It made me realize all the fun and useful things you could do with computers, like creating games and applications that can simplify our lives. I didn't want to just use technology, I wanted to create it!"

What's surprised her about it
"I had no idea there would be such variety—I thought that I would be programming all the time. But I do a little bit of everything. Not only do I work on all kinds of electronic devices (controllers, lights, switches, sonars), but I spend a lot of time sharing my ideas and doing presentations, which is really fun."