Chemical Engineering Diversity Committee
The University of Florida Chemical Engineering Diversity Committee serves to support efforts to promote a united departmental culture of diversity, equity, and inclusion. We identify related issues that need to be addressed, propose activities and practices that will improve the department culture, and work in collaboration with relevant groups in the department, college, and university. Our membership includes representation from faculty, staff, doctoral students, master’s students, and undergraduate students. Our committee is supported by an associated working group comprised of members of our industrial advisory board.
Inclusive Excellence is the active process of including and respecting everyone as we strive for excellence and equitable outcomes in all we do at the University of Florida. Daily actions toward Inclusive Excellence are the responsibility of every one of us.
ABCs of fostering Inclusive Excellence at UF:
- Advocate for everyone’s success.
- Be an ally to others as you partner with your colleagues on DEI work.
- Celebrate your successes!
- Mark E. Orazem – Chair
- Lilu Funkenbusch
- Tony Ladd
- Whitney Stoppel
- Janice Harris
- Saeed Ahmed
- Chan Wen Chiu
- Zoharia B. Dreyfuss
- Aniruddha V. Kulkarni
- Kanva Jailesh Rawal
- Ambar Velázquez
- Joshua Pinto
- Paula Restrepo
Whitney StoppelAssistant Professor, William P. and Tracy Cirioli Term Professor, and Ph.D. Recruitment Coordinator
Our research team is focused on the design and optimization of natural biomaterials for a variety of clinical applications. Experimental research explores the mechanical and transport properties of elastic and viscoelastic materials, aiming to determine a predictive set of material characteristics that have a known function in the body. We aim to harness the power of the immune system in tissue regeneration to alter the way that these materials integrate following implantation, providing a new strategy for optimizing materials for clinical applications.
MATERIAL DESIGN AND IN VITRO CHARACTERIZATION
Natural materials and polymer composites derived from biopolymers such as silk fibroin, alginate, or decellularized extracellular matrix can be combined to form a variety of material shapes, architectures, and mechanical properties. In turn, the format for the biomaterial can have a significant impact on cellular function and biological processes. We determine specific material properties and compositions that consistently alter or direct cell function through time-dependent analysis of cell-material interactions. These materials have applications in soft tissue repair and as in vitro platforms for understanding disease progression.
QUANTIFYING BIOMATERIAL PERFORMANCE IN VIVO
Understanding complex interactions between the immune system, local stromal cell populations, and implanted biomaterials necessitates spatiotemporal analysis of biomaterial degradation and histogenesis. We quantify how biomaterial composition and structure alter the rate of degradation and the composition and strength of new tissue that replaces the material. On-going efforts aim to understand how secondary diseases, ancestry, biological sex, and age influence the kinetics of degradation and tissue formation.
Work in the Stoppel Lab is in collaboration with engineers, clinicians, and scientists across UF. The Stoppel Lab values educating and training a diverse workforce and welcomes any student interested in applications of chemical engineering to advancing technologies for human health.
Ph.D., 2014, University of Massachusetts, Amherst
Awards & Distinctions
- William P. and Tracy Cirioli Term Professorship in Chemical Engineering, 2021-2024
Cell-Material Interactions in vitro and in vivo
Tissue Engineering and Regenerative Medicine
COLLEGE Diversity Statement
The Herbert Wertheim College of Engineering (HWCOE) values a diverse and inclusive community. It is integral to success in every area of our college. Therefore, the College is committed to non-discrimination with respect to all areas of human differences, including but not limited to national and ethnic origin, race, age, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, beliefs and opinions, religion and faiths, culture, socio-economic background, level of physical or mental ability, and veteran’s status. This commitment applies in all areas–to students, faculty, and staff and intends to reflect the College’s belief that educational and employment decisions and access to University activities should be based on an individual’s abilities and qualifications.
The HWCOE values broad diversity within our community and is committed to individual and group empowerment, inclusion, and the elimination of discrimination. We aspire to educate students to become future leaders capable of creating diverse and inclusive work cultures wherever their careers may take them.
It is imperative that we take care of ourselves, our children, and others. We have listed below recommended links for information and opportunities.