Brown University Assistant Professor of Engineering Anita Shukla has been awarded a 2017 Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching. The award, announced by Dean of the Faculty Kevin McLaughlin's office, recognizes just two Brown University assistant professors or lecturers each year. Recipients receive a research grant in the amount of $3,000 for each of the next two academic years, 2017-2018 and 2018-2019.
Shukla, who also has a courtesy appointment as Assistant Professor of Molecular Pharmacology, Physiology and Biotechnology in the Division of Biology and Medicine, teaches Transport and Biotransport Processes (ENGN 1110), as well as Nanoengineering and Nanomedicine (ENGN 1510). Shukla currently serves as an Honors Thesis Advisor for engineering undergraduates, and faculty advisor for both the Society of Women Engineers and the graduate chapter of the Biomedical Engineering Society.
"Students appreciate Dr. Shukla's thoughtful and clear lecturing style," said Sarah Cowles '17, a chemical and biochemical engineering concentrator. "Dr. Shukla is always exceedingly well-prepared and pushes students to think beyond the course material. She highly encourages student questions and participation, which aids in our understanding of the course material. Her availability and willingness to meet and discuss course material or give general engineering advice outside of class time makes her students grateful for her."
Shukla was recently awarded an Office of Naval Research (ONR) Director of Research Early Career Grant. Through this award, she plans to develop biomaterials that act as sensitive indicators of potential infection, while incorporating therapeutics ranging from small molecules to cells aimed at optimizing wound healing for injured personnel in future military applications. She also serves as principal investigator for another grant from ONR aimed at developing advanced antimicrobial field dressings.
Shukla's research focuses on designing advanced biomaterials for applications in drug delivery and regenerative medicine. Prior to arriving at Brown, she was an NIH Ruth Kirschstein postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Bioengineering at Rice University, where she explored the influence of biomimetic geometries on stem cell differentiation. She received her Ph.D. in chemical engineering from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 2011 as an NSF Graduate Research Fellow. Her graduate research focused on self-assembled biomaterials for drug delivery. Shukla also received an M.S. in chemical engineering practice from MIT. She received her B.S. at Carnegie Mellon University in 2006 with majors in chemical engineering and biomedical engineering.
The formal presentation of the 2017 Dean's Award for Excellence in Teaching will take place on Monday, May 1, at the University Awards Ceremony organized by the Harriet W. Sheridan Center. The ceremony will begin with a reception at 4 p.m. in Pembroke Hall 305 followed by the presentation of awards at 5 p.m.