Students

Ph.D. Student Isabella Costa Does Outreach in Brazil

Children in Maripá de Minas don’t think of pursuing a higher education, likely because they don’t know what opportunities await them in Brazil or beyond. Isabella Loureiro Muller Costa, a third year Ph.D. candidate at UC Davis and Brazil native, plans to show these students what their future could entail with her outreach efforts.

Developing Life-Like Synthetic Cells

Materials Science and Engineering Ph.D. candidate Pallavi D. Sambre is taking the first steps toward engineering lifelike artificial materials that reconstitute a cell’s ability to change their membrane shape to move from one part of the body to another.

Student Spotlight: Sevag Momjian

The natural curiosity about the world Sevag Momjian '22 has always had led him to materials science and engineering, and he's excited to help the field realize its potential to solve some of the greatest challenges of the 21st Century.

MSE Celebrates the Class of 2022

The Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) celebrated its graduating seniors from the class of 2022 during the Senior Send-off held on Sunday, June 12, 2022. The graduates and their families were invited to Kemper Hall after the main graduation ceremony held at UC Davis Health Stadium to recognize and celebrate their accomplishments.

Student Spotlight: Chad Serrao

After completing a bachelor's degree in philosophy, Chad Serrao '22 decided to go back to school to pursue engineering and became hooked on materials science and engineering and looks forward to playing a role in using the field to build a sustainable future.

Student Spotlight: Avery Adams

Avery Adams '22 was drawn to materials science and engineering because of the versatility of the field that allows her to do both experimental and applied work for a wide range of fields.

Student Spotlight: Pooja Rao

Pooja Rao '22 thought she would get her B.S. and immediately leave academia, but she developed a love for research as part of Assistant Professor Roopali Kukreja's group and decided to continue her studies as a master's student.

Meghna Srivastava Receives Jeffery C. Gibeling Award for Best Master’s Thesis

Meghna Srivastava is this year’s recipient of the of the College of Engineering’s Jeffery C. Gibeling Master’s Thesis Excellence Award, which recognizes the M.S. student who has submitted the best master's thesis. Srivastava earned her M.S. in materials science and engineering under the mentorship of Associate Professor Marina Leite.

Ph.D. Student Margaret Duncan Receives NSF Graduate Research Fellowship

Second-year materials science and engineering Ph.D. student Margaret Duncan, part of Associate Professor Marina Leite’s lab, received a National Science Foundation (NSF) Graduate Research Fellowship. The fellowship is the oldest and one of the most prestigious of its kind and it recognizes and supports outstanding STEM graduate students who have the potential to become knowledgeable experts and significantly contribute to research, teaching, and innovation.

Student Spotlight: Ethan Suwandi

One of materials science and engineering major Ethan Suwandi’s favorite things to do is “nerd out” about materials with his friends, classmates and professors at UC Davis.

“It’s very cathartic, at least for me,” he said. “Materials is a niche topic that you can’t discuss with many people, so I think all of us would take the chance to say, ‘look at this cool thing I found’ or ‘look at this cool thing I’m researching and let me tell you all about the mechanisms behind it!’”

Student Spotlight: Griffin Hart

Recent materials science and engineering graduate Griffin Hart ’21 used UC Davis to try college a second time and was able to make the most of his experience.

Hart started college at Humboldt State University, but didn’t know what he wanted to do. This made him feel unmotivated and that was reflected in his grades, so he moved home and enrolled in community college. He became interested in sustainability and through his calculus, physics and chemistry classes, he began to see how much he could do with math and science.

M.Eng Student William Moore Receives DOE SULI Award

Recent materials science and engineering (MSE) M.Eng graduate William Moore became an expert in connections as one of this year’s recipients of a Science Undergraduate Laboratory Internship Program (SULI) Award from the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE). The award encourages undergraduate students and recent graduates to pursue STEM Careers by funding 10-week research experiences at one of 17 DOE labs and facilities.

Student Spotlight: Miranda Bell

Fourth-year materials science and engineering (MSE) major Miranda Bell’s experience at UC Davis was defined by a little of everything as she narrowed down her broad interests while learning how the world works.

Student Spotlight: Nicole Shuman

Fourth-year materials science and engineering (MSE) major Nicole Shuman found materials science as a returning college student and is determined to use her knowledge to inspire others through outreach, teaching and mentorship.

Shuman started her career managing a multimillion-dollar big box retail company in the Los Angeles area. After 15 years, she moved to the Sacramento area for a job, but it fell through, and she found herself missing the connections she had and looking for a new opportunity.

MSE Virtual Senior Sendoff June 11

The Department of Materials Science and Engineering (MSE) is hosting a virtual senior send-off to celebrate the class of 2021 on Friday, June 11 from 1 – 2:30 p.m. The senior-send off celebrates the accomplishments and hard work of all of the MSE department’s graduating students as they move on to the next chapter of their lives.

Register to attend

Ph.D. Student Tucker Murrey wins 2021 Excellence in Graduate Student Safety Award

Starting this year, the UC Davis College of Engineering is proud to recognize four outstanding graduate students with the College of Engineering Graduate Student Awards.

These awards honor the achievements and contributions of engineering graduate students for their research and service. Nominations were open to any M.S. and Ph.D. student enrolled in a graduate program in the college. Each award recipient will receive a $500 scholarship and their name will be added to a permanent display located in the Kemper Hall lobby.

Student Spotlight: Yiqing Xia

Materials science and engineering (MSE) Ph.D. student Yiqing Xia has been chosen as a presenter for the 2021 North American Materials Colloquium Series, a competitive virtual materials science seminar series involving over 35 MSE programs from around the country. He will present his recent research on the thermodynamic and kinetic behavior of nano-confined liquids on April 8-9, representing UC Davis, the MSE department and his research on confined liquids and glassy materials.

Ph.D. Student Meghna Srivastava wins best poster awards at 2020 MRS Conference

Materials science and engineering Ph.D. student Meghna Srivastava received two best poster awards for her work at the virtual 2020 Materials Research Society (MRS) Spring/Fall Meeting and Exhibit. Her poster “Machine Learning Framework for Accelerated Development of Halide Perovskites” was named one of three best posters in the “Frontiers of Halide Perovskites” symposium and one of twenty best posters conference-wide.

“I am extremely honored and grateful for this recognition, and I’m hoping that it draws more attention to the work that we’re doing in the Leite Lab,” she said.

Student Spotlight: Weidi Zhu

Recent materials science and engineering (MSE) Ph.D. graduate Weidi Zhu had never worked with glasses before coming to UC Davis, but through research projects with Blacutt-Underwood Professor Sabyasachi Sen, he developed an interest in the material that turned into a career with Apple. As the world becomes “smart,” Zhu hopes to use what he learned at UC Davis to contribute to the science behind the glassy materials that will become increasingly important to the world.

Student Spotlight: Raegan Taylor

For fourth-year materials science and engineering major Raegan Taylor, engineering is a means to understand and contribute to the world around her. Driven by a desire to help people, she has used her curiosity about the world and her research experience to build a strong foundation in engineering as she pursues a career in optical engineering.

“I see engineering as an avenue to learn about the world and round out my interests in a way that’s beneficial to other people,” she said.