UChicago Careers in Science and Technology Program Expands to include Engineering and Math

In connection with the announcement of the Engineering minor at the Institute for Molecular Engineering, UChicago careers in Science and Technology will now include Engineering and Math

Making a welcome introduction into the rigor of the UChicago liberal arts education, Dean John D. Boyer announced Thursday the addition of a molecular engineering minor to the College’s programs of study.  In a joint announcement with the Institute of Molecular Engineering (IME) Founding Priztker Director, Matthew Tirrell, the unveiling of the new minor marked a transition in the college and will be an added attraction for prospective students, current students, and faculty.  Tirrell noted that, “[The new minor] is very exciting for faculty because it will add a fresh component to education” here at the university.   Complementing the IME’s efforts to support budding engineers, Career Advancement is excited to announce that the UChicago Careers in Science and Technology is adding Engineering and Math to its portfolio. With this addition, UCISTEM will now cater to a wider range of students and in turn, broaden the presentations and skill building workshops that it offers.

UCISTEM is a pre-professional program/track offered by Career Advancement and is run by Senior Associate Director Andrea Dieckmann. As the program’s director, Dieckmann helps undergraduates explore, prepare for, and obtain careers in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math. “We are very excited about the new addition,” Dieckmann commented. “IME and UCISTEM have worked together in the past collaborating on workshops for the students and now with the announcement of a new minor and the growing department, we will have the opportunity to have more professors and researchers come in to talk about the research they are doing as well as help mentor students throughout their professional development.”

In a recent interview, Tirrell spoke of his ongoing research in IME labs, and his work with undergraduate students. “Professors [Juan] de Pablo, [Paul] Nealey, and I have been largely working on polymers, organic materials, with applications to new materials development, microelectronics fabrications, heath care, and in my lab, students work on developing nanoparticles that can go in the bloodstream or can be injected trans-dermally and produce some favorable diagnostic or therapeutic function.” Research projects such as these provide undergraduate students a rare perspective early in their academic careers and offer an advantage in exploring their future career path.  Emma Patchak, Class of 2016, attended UCISTEM workshops and worked as a Research Assistant with the IME. The combination of these experiences and her hard work have led her to receiving offers to continue her work in Nuclear Engineering at Argonne, the UChicago Physics Division, and the IME. “More and more students are getting involved in research,” Dieckmann noted. “IME has been great about hiring undergraduates to help in their labs. We have a strong relationship with the IME and look forward to continued growth.”

While not a major, Tirrell sees the new minor as an opportunity for undergraduate scientists to take their ideas and bring them to life as engineers. “We will be helping to bridge ideas, technology, and commerce by broadening cultural and intellectual experience in the field.” Career Advancement is enthusiastic about the growing partnership with UCISTEM and Professor Tirrell as well as others from the IME.  To learn more about Career Advancement and UCISTEM, please visit https://careeradvancement.uchicago.edu/index.