Akhil Mandalapu
Akhil Mandalapu

Student. Researcher. Designer.

I'm currently a student at The University of Texas at Austin studying Public Health.

I'm primarily an undergraduate research assistant at the Urban Information Lab.

I'm fascinated by the role design has in improving the systems around us.


Austin, TX

A Two-Sided Approach

Hi, my name is Akhil! I am currently pursuing a bachelor's degree in Public Health at the University of Texas at Austin. I'm fascinated by all the knowledge that can be gained from data. I'm interested in how we can improve systems around us. In my free time, I love to lift weights, read books, and drink new varieties of tea. I am currently exploring new creative avenues such as through writing.

Climate change and existing challenges within health systems domestically and abroad pose a major challenge for public health and medicine. To address these grand challenges, I believe in an approach that combines deep individual impact and broad impact at scale. Both approaches synergistically inform each other. I hope to combine deep, individual impact through clinical practice and broad systemic impact through design, research and public health.


I am interested in a wide range of different research topics surrounding medicine and public health. Right now my research interests include: environmental health, climate resilience, environmental justice, urban informatics, health equity, health education and health interventions. I am also interested in how data can be translated into wisdom using computational methods. While I have a wide range of interests at the moment, my research interests can be summarized by investigating the way systems are designed and how they can be improved.

The University of Texas at Austin - School of Architecture

Urban Information Lab

Principal Investigator: Dr. Junfeng Jiao, Supervisor: Dr. Kijin Seong ⋅ (2021-Current)

The Urban Information Lab uses emerging information technologies to better understand, measure, plan and develop our urban environments.The lab uses computational methods to help develop smarter cities. My area of focus in the lab is at the intersection of urban design and public health in the context of climate change resilience and environmental justice. My current research projects investigate the impact of built environmental factors and extreme heat on emergency medical service (EMS) accessibiility, performance, and utilization.

The University of Texas at Austin - Dell Medical School

Health Leadership Apprentice

Program Director: Dr. Steve Steffensen, Project Supervisor: Dr. Liana Petruzzi ⋅ (2021-Current)

The Health Leadership Apprentice program pairs up teams of undergraduate students of all majors to work with community partners to address social determinants of health in Austin. My team (Green House) worked with the community health workers that are a part of Dell Medical School to get a better understanding of what the role of CHWs are in the patient care team and what their workflows are. The ultimate goal of our work is to better understand the workflow of community health workers and upon this understanding to help find ways to improve processes and support their work.

Baylor College of Medicine - Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology

Putluri Lab

Mentors: Dr. Nagireddy Putluri (2018) and Dr. Sean Mondesire (2018-2020) ⋅ (2018-2020)

The Putluri lab investigates the metabolomic properties of tumors to understand the biochemical basis behind cancer progression. My role in the lab was to analyze over 10,000 high-performance liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry (MS-HPLC) spectrums and to develop figures summarizing biochemical data. I led a team of 2-3 interns in completing data analysis using R and lab software. I also worked on an independent extension project where I investigated the accuracy of various neural network architectures in classifying chromatograms under the mentorship of Dr. Sean Mondesire, professor of Computer Science at St. Thomas University.

Activities + Work Experience


Content Creator

Campus Environmental Center, Environmental Justice Collective ⋅ (2021-2023)

The Environmental Justice Collective (EJC) is a project team within the Campus Environmental Center focused on discussing environmental justice issues. My role on the team is to help create promotional and educational content for various initatives throughout the year.

Environmental Justice Collective's Instagram Page


Undergraduate Teaching Assistant

UGS 303 - Originality in the Arts and Sciences - Dr. De Lozanne ⋅ (Fall 2021 & Fall 2022)

I served as a peer mentor and a resource for a cohort of 5-6 first year public health students in any of the College of Natural Sciences honors programs. I led two weekly meetings and provided feedback on student deliverables.


Undergraduate Teaching Assistant

PBH 358D - Health Policy and Health Systems - Dr. Nauert ⋅ (Fall 2022 & Spring 2023)

I served as a grader for an upper-division public health class. I led weekly office hours to answer student questions, graded student assignments and coordinated with the instructor in developing assesments.


Contact Tracer

UT Health Austin ⋅ (2021-2022)

I contact traced within the UT and broader Austin community to help trace the spread of COVID-19. I also provided testing, isolation or quaratine recommendations to cases and close contacts of cases.



Ascension Seton ⋅ (January 2022 - Current)

I served in three roles as a volunteer: I assisted staff in the Surgical ICU by restocking carts and attending to call lights,I assisted in the front desk by providing patient wayfinding services and I assisted physicians in the emergency department by placing pages and checking in on patients.


Summer Research Intern

Office of the Dean of Students, University of Texas at Austin ⋅ (June 2021 - August 2021)

I conducted several qualitative data analyses of peer institutions and the literature to determine trends and future steps to write two reports to inform new policy directions for the UT Outpost and Student Veteran Services.


Event Planner and Webmaster

Dean's Scholars Student Association ⋅ (2020-2023)

As part of the Dean's Scholars Student Association, I organized several events including: Deanslympics, Graduate Student Panel and the Spring Peer Advising Event. I also helped tutor students at Garza High School in Austin in high school physics. I also have led an overhaul and redesign of the organization's website.

Dean's Scholars Student Organization Website


Robotics Team Lead, Mentor

Discobots ⋅ (2016-2020, 2020-2023)

I was involved with the Discobots VEX robotics team in several ways, first as a team member during the 2016-2017 season and as a team lead from 2017-2020. As a team, we have won 17 awards at the local, regional and state level resulting in being invited to the world championship three years in a row. I also wrote a version of a beginner's guide for the organization. I now serve as a mentor within the organization.


Documentation Team Lead

SPARK Robotics ⋅ (2021-2022)

I served as the head of the documentation team for SPARK robotics, a college-level team competing in the VEXU competition. I wrote over 150 progress reports by consulting engineers and programmers to effectively communicate team progress. Our team won the prestigious Design Award for our documentation at the regional Level and at the World Championship.