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About Us

About the Department

Educating top-quality engineers is our highest priority. Our students work with internationally-recognized faculty and receive specialized training in molecular engineering, nanotechnology, clean energy, and other impactful fields. Through continuous curriculum improvements, world-class research, and an emphasis on entrepreneurship, we are charting the future of chemical engineering.

students doing a variety of research tasks in a lab


The University of Washington chemical engineering community values diversity and inclusiveness, collegiality and respect. Quality and excellence are prized, together with multidisciplinary thinking and entrepreneurial spirit. The department strives for continuous improvement for creativity and innovation in both undergraduate and graduate research and education.


To educate the next generation of visionaries, prepare students for leadership in diverse careers, create knowledge, and provide multidisciplinary solutions to broad societal problems.


Knowledge and solutions for a changing world

Education and Research Excellence

  • #20 in U.S. News & World Report’s 2023 Best Graduate School rankings
  • ChemE faculty play lead roles at innovative UW centers:
    • The Center for the Science of Synthesis Across Scales (François Baneyx, Director) aims to define the rules that govern how molecular-scale building blocks assemble into ordered structures

    • The Clean Energy Institute (Daniel Schwartz, Director) supports the advancement of next-generation solar energy and battery materials and devices

    • The eScience Institute (David Beck, Director of Research) empowers researchers and students in all fields to answer fundamental questions through the use of large, complex, and noisy data

    • The Center for Dialysis Innovation (Buddy Ratner, Co-Director) develops and tests innovative treatment technologies in order to improve the health and well-being of people receiving dialysis therapy

    • The Molecular Engineering and Sciences Institute serves as a physical incubator and an intellectual accelerator for translational molecular-level research in clean tech and biotech

  • Our researchers hold intellectual property in electrochemical printing; methane bioconversion; nanocomposites incorporating; nanocrystalline inks for electro optical devices; nonfouling biomaterials; porous biomaterials for tissue engineering; non-linear electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (NLEIS); and organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs)

Faculty at a Glance

  • 26 core teaching and research faculty
  • 15 endowed positions
  • 10 joint or adjunct faculty with other UW engineering, medicine, and science departments
  • 19 affiliate faculty from external research and educational institutions and industry
  • National Academy of Engineering Members: Samson Jenekhe, Buddy Ratner, Bruce Finlayson (professor emeritus), Allan Hoffman (professor emeritus)

  • National Academy of Sciences Member: Mary Lidstrom 

  • American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Fellows: François Baneyx, Samson Jenekhe, Mary Lidstrom, Buddy Ratner, Charles Sleicher (professor emeritus)

  • American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering Fellows: François Baneyx,  Buddy Ratner, David Castner (professor emeritus), Allan Hoffman (professor emeritus)  

  • American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) Fellows: John Berg, Bruce Finlayson (professor emeritus), Charles Sleicher (professor emeritus)

  • American Academy of Microbiology Fellows: François Baneyx, Mary Lidstrom 

  • American Chemical Society Fellow: Buddy Ratner 

  • Electrochemical Society Fellow: Dan Schwartz

  • American Physical Society Fellow: Sam Jenekhe 

  • UK Royal Society of Chemistry Fellow: Sam Jenekhe 

  • Washington State Academy of Science Members: François Baneyx, Samson Jenekhe, Jim Pfaendtner, Buddy Ratner, Dan Schwartz, David Castner (professor emeritus), Bruce Finlayson (professor emeritus), Allan Hoffman (professor emeritus), Mary Lidstrom (professor emeritus)


You’ll regularly find UW ChemE’s among the recipients of:

2019-2020 Academic Year BS MS PhD
Enrollment 205 36 58
Women 36% 19% 41%
Underrepresented Minorities* 13% 0% 10%
Degrees Awarded 69 15 14

*African American, Hispanic American, Native American, Hawaiian/Pacific Islander