Professor Shu Yang

206 LRSM, 3231 Walnut Street
University of Pennsylvania
Department of Materials Science and Engineering
Philadelphia, PA 19104

Tel: 215-898-9645
Fax: 215-573-2128

twitter: @SYang_UPenn



Ph.D., Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Cornell University, 1999 (Academic tree: Chemistry)
M.S., Chemistry and Chemical Biology, Cornell University, 1997
B.S., Materials Science, Fudan University, China, 1992

Positions Held

2021.7-present, Joseph Bordogna Professor of Engineering and Applied Science

Chair, Department of Materials Science and Engineering, UPenn

2013.7-present, Professor, Materials Science and Engineering; Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, UPenn

2009.7-2013.6, Associate Professor, Materials Science and Engineering; Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, UPenn

2004.1-2009.6, Skirkanich Assistant Professor of Materials Innovation, Materials Science and Engineering; Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering, UPenn

1999.7-2003.12, Member of Technical Staff, Bell Laboratories, Lucent Technologies

2017-2022.7, Deputy Director, Laboratory for Research on the Structure of Matter (LRSM), National Science Foundation (NSF) funded Materials Research Science and Engineering Center (MRSEC) at UPenn

2005-2011, LRSM IRG 1 co-leader, “IRG 1 – Filamentous Networks & Structured Gels”

2015-present, Director, Center for Analyzing Evolved Structures as Optimized Products: Science and Engineering for the Human Habitat (AESOP)

2016-present, REACT /ACT 1 co-leader, NSF funded Research and Education in Active Coatings Technologies (REACT), a Partnership for International Research and Education (PIRE)

2017, Executive Committee, Penn Health-Tech: Center for Health, Devices, and Technology (PHT)

2013-present, Members-at-Large, Division of Polymeric Materials Science & Engineering (PMSE), American Chemical Society (ACS)

2017-present, ACS/PMSE Fellow Committee

2017-2021, Board member, International Liquid Crystal Elastomer Conference (ILCEC)

2010, Materials Research Society (MRS) Fall 2010 meeting co-chair (with Ana Claudia Arias, Robert Cook, Clemens Heske)

2018-present, Associate Editor, Science Advances

2019-2021, Scientific Editor, 2021-present: Editorial Board member,  Materials Horizon

2022-present, Editorial Board Member, Droplet

2017-2022, Associate Editor, Polymer Reviews

2019-2022, Editorial Board Member, Journal of the Royal Society Interface

2017-2019, Editorial Board Member, Polymers

2009-2015, Advisory Board member, Nanoscale



2024 Penn Engineering Student Choice Undergraduate Research Mentoring Award

2023, named “Inventor of the Year” by Penn Center for Innovation.

2023 American Chemical Society (ACS) Langmuir Lectureship for contributions to the geometric design and controlled assembly of colloids and liquid crystals at surfaces and interfaces. See her interview with ACS.

2022-2023, Inaugural cohort of Ivy Plus Provost Leadership Fellows by the Faculty Advancement Network (FAN), a consortium to advance diversity and inclusion

2022, Fellow, ACS

2022, The International Liquid Crystal Society (ILCS) Mid-Career Award (LG)

2022, Cozzarelli Prize Recipient from PNAS for Class III: Engineering and Applied Sciences.

2022, Co-led a workshop on Health and Climate Change for The Engineering Research Visioning Alliance (ERVA), a U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF) initiative, and co-drafted the report, The Role of Engineering to Address Climate Change.

2021, Fellow, Materials Research Society (MRS)

2019-2020, Fellow, Drexel University’s Executive Leadership in Academic Technology, Engineering and Science (ELATES) Program that advances senior women faculty in academic engineering, computer science, and other STEM fields.

2018, Fellow, Division of Soft Matter (DSOFT), American Physical Society (APS), "For contributions to the geometric design and controlled assembly of soft matter".

2018, Fellow, ACS, Division of Polymeric Materials Science & Engineering (PMSE), “For dedicated service to the Division of Polymeric Materials: Science & Engineering and pioneering the synthesis and fabrication of responsive nano- and microstructured soft materials”

2017, Fellow, Royal Society of Chemistry (FRSC)

2015, recipient of the 2015-16 George H. Heilmeier Faculty Award for Excellence in Research for "pioneering the synthesis and fabrication of responsive nano- and micro-structured soft materials."

2014, Fellow, National Academy of Inventors (NAI).

2012, Arthur K. Doolittle Award from ACS/PMSE for the paper entitled "Understanding pattern transformation mechanisms in different responsive hydrogel membranes."

2011, Invited speaker at Japan-American Frontiers of Engineering Symposium (Japan).

2011, Invited speaker, Youth Leadership Forum, The 12th Fudan University World Alumni Conference

2005-2011, LRSM IRG-1 Thrust co-leader, “Filamentous Networks & Structured Gels”

2006, NSF/DMR CAREER award

2006-2008, 3M Non-tenured faculty award

2004,  TR 35 as one of the world’s top young innovators under age of 35 selected by MIT Technology Review

2004, ACS Presidential Award for IUPAC 40th Anniversary Symposium on Macromolecules

2004, Selected to German-American Frontiers of Engineering Symposium (Germany) by National Academy of Engineering (NAE).

2003, Bell Labs team for the Technical Insights’ Excellence in Research Award on “Microfluidics in Photonics” selected by Frost and Sullivan

2002, Selected to Frontiers of Engineering Symposium by NAE as one of the top 100 young engineers

2001, Unilever Student Award in Polymer Science and Engineering from ACS

1999, ICI Student Award in Applied Polymer Science from ACS