The Kansas Board of Regents In March approved bioengineering graduate degree programs for the University of Kansas School of Engineering.
Students may officially begin enrolling in the new programs in fall 2007, although bioengineering is not entirely new to the campus. Several departments within the school have enabled graduate and undergraduate students to pursue degrees with a bioengineering or bioinformatics focus. In addition, over the past five years, the university has supported strategic investments in new faculty whose research and teaching focus primarily on bioengineering related fields.
At KU, the bioengineering programs acknowledge the interdisciplinary nature of the field. Engineering faculty members have developed close ties with their counterparts in KU's prestigious schools of Medicine, Allied Health and Pharmacy, and the College of Liberal Arts & Sciences, as well as with professionals outside the university. Nearly 50 KU faculty members from both the Lawrence campus and the Medical Center campus in Kansas City will play an active role.
The School of Engineering has currently developed programs to offer master's and doctoral degrees. Students will be able to pursue a degree in one of six bio-inspired tracks, all of which are interdisciplinary in nature.
The tracks and their respective directors are:
· Bioimaging, Associate Professor Mehmet Bilgen
· Bioinformatics, Assistant Professor Terry Clark
· Biomaterials and Tissue Engineering, Assistant Professor Michael Detamore
· Biomechanics and Neural Engineering, Associate Professor Carl Luchies
· Biomedical Product Design and Development, Associate Professor Lisa Friis
· Biomolecular Engineering, Associate Professor Marylee Southard
Bioengineering research efforts at the university will be led by Dr. Paulette Spencer, D.D.S. Spencer, who will officially join KU as a distinguished professor at the start of the fall semester, is currently a Curator's professor in the School of Dentistry at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. Dr. Spencer earned her D.D.S. from UMKC, and also earned a master's degree in pediatric dentistry from the University of Minnesota and a master's in materials engineering from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. She earned a doctorate in oral biology and physics at UMKC, and performs research in the area of biomaterials with a particular focus on understanding the fundamental phenomena controlling biological interactions at material interfaces and the development of non-destructive techniques for analyzing solid-liquid interfacial interactions in biological systems. She is well known both nationally and internationally for developing durable biomaterials to replace skeletal or oral tissues lost due to age, trauma or disease.
Learn more about Bioengineering at KU.