Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering to celebrate 10th anniversary with two days of public science talks

Sept. 17-18 events will include livestreamed discussions with policymakers, Nobel laureates

The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering at the University of Chicago is celebrating its 10th anniversary with two days of events open to researchers and the public that highlight the school’s ongoing mission to develop new solutions for pressing global challenges.

These include an alumni and industry day on Sept. 17 and a scientific conference on Sept. 18. Events will be streamed from the David Rubenstein Forum at UChicago, and members of the public are invited to watch live by registering at PME’s 10th anniversary website.

The programs include presentations from industry leaders, faculty and other academic experts, as well as panel discussions, fireside chats with industry leaders and talks from PME alumni now in research positions around the world.

Topics include the impact of engineering on society and the role of universities in innovation, as well as recent breakthroughs in quantum science, immunoengineering, and materials for sustainability and health.

Featured speakers and panelists include Nobel Prize laureates Frances Arnold, Bernard L. Feringa and William D. Philips; Vanessa Chan, the U.S. Department of Energy’s chief commercialization officer; David Axelrod, founder and director of the Institute of Politics at UChicago; France A. Córdova, president of the Science Philanthropy Alliance and former director of the National Science Foundation; and many others.

Pritzker Molecular Engineering was founded in 2011 as the Institute for Molecular Engineering. It was charged with developing a new kind of engineering program that would transcend traditional boundaries and focus on societal problems primed for new solutions. In 2019, in recognition of the success of the program and with the support of the Pritzker Foundation, the institute was elevated to the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering—the first school in the nation dedicated to molecular engineering.

PME has grown rapidly in scope and size since its founding, developing programs in areas such as quantum engineering, immunoengineering, advanced materials, energy storage, and ensuring a clean global water supply. View a timeline here.

In collaboration with partners like Argonne National Laboratory, PME has tackled pressing issues with advances like the purification of water using solar energy, converting carbon dioxide into useful fuel, immunotherapy-based approaches to cancer, innovative “nano-traps” to destroy viruses in the body, and the launch of one of the longest quantum testbeds in the nation.