Cooper Undergraduate Research Club Hosts Spring Research Seminar and What's Next for Their Club Founders

POSTED ON: May 11, 2023

Photo of Canying Wang ChE’23, Xiao Lin ChE’23, Sangjoon (Bob) Lee ChE’23.

Left to right: Canying Wang ChE’23, Xiao Lin ChE’23, Sangjoon (Bob) Lee ChE’23.

Group photo after the Q&A with PhD Students in NYC event panelists, organizers, and students.

Group photo after the Q&A with PhD Students in NYC event panelists, organizers, and students.

Session group photos with presenters, organizers, and faculty during Spring 2023 Research Seminar.

Session group photos with presenters, organizers, and faculty during Spring 2023 Research Seminar.

Three chemical engineering seniors, Canying Wang, Xiao Lin, Sangjoon (Bob) Lee, established the Cooper Union Undergraduate Research Club (URC) in Fall of 2022 with a shared mission to elevate the academic research environment among students and faculty across all majors at the Cooper Union. 

The URC was founded on two missions (1) to promote and communicate current research activities at Cooper Union and (2) to provide a platform for undergraduate students to acquire professional academic presentation experiences within The Cooper Union.

In Spring 2023, the URC hosted a Research Seminar, a slight change from last year’s event. The seminar consisted of two impactful events. The first event featured 11 upperclassmen and master’s students research across all four majors. Edward Huang ChE’20 MChE’23, advised by Professor Jennifer Weiser, delivered a thesis presentation during the seminar on “Fabrication of Electrospun Polystyrene-Polyethyleneimine Fibers for Direct Capture of CO2 from Ambient Air.” Additional student presenters included  Renata Ashapatov ChE’23, Iram Rahman ChE’19 MChE’24, and Wesley Wong ChE’24 in the Environmental and Sustainability session. Angela Huang ChE’22 MChE’24, Brandon Bunt BSE’22 MME’23, and Anna Konvicka EE’23 in the Bioengineering and Biomedical Session. Ravindra Bisram EE’21 MEE’23, Micah Ali CE’23, Fareeha Tabassum CE’23 and Bonny Wang EE’22 MEE’23 in the Computation and Machine Learning session.

The second event was a Q&A session with Ph.D. students from the City College of New York, Columbia University, and New York University. The event yet again was well attended and included a lunch on the Cooper Union Alumni Terrace.

What are Canying Wang ChE’23, Xiao Lin ChE’23, Sangjoon (Bob) Lee ChE’23 plans after Cooper?

Sangjoon (Bob) Lee ChE’23, spent three semesters conducting Independent Study research with Professor Robert Topper on quantum and computational chemistry research. During his time at Cooper, Lee delivered a combined total of four oral and poster presentations at academic conferences and contributed to two peer-reviewed journals. To continue expanding his research interests and knowledge, Lee will attend Columbia University in Materials Science and Engineering in the Department of Applied Physics and Applied Mathematics.

“As everyone returned from remote learning, I envisioned this club would serve as a bridge between faculty and students in uniting all of us. I am grateful for the administration, faculty, and our club members for their unwavering support and aligned vision.” – Sangjoon (Bob) Lee

Xiao Lin ChE’23, advised by Professor Amanda Simson, serves as a teaching assistant for Professor Simson's Thermodynamics I course at Cooper. He is known for being the one of the most academically outstanding students in the chemical engineering graduating class. Xiao Lin has received numerous accolades. At the 2021 AIChE Annual Meeting and Student Conference in Boston, Massachusetts, Lin secured 3rd place in the Environmental Division III Undergraduate Research Poster Competition. Lin will be attending Columbia University to pursue a PhD in the Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences, with a focus on carbon capture and removal.

“I am delighted that we have a club like URC, which effectively promotes research opportunities for undergraduate students and enhances the academic atmosphere.” – Xiao Lin

Canying Wang ChE’23, advised by Professor Amanda Simson, began her research during her sophomore year. She spent the summer after her junior year participating in an REU at the University of Maryland, focusing on lithium-ion battery research. Wang will be attending New York University to pursue her PhD, focusing on the research theme of sustainability in the Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering.

“Being a part of the Undergraduate Research Club has been inspiring as I observe the diverse perspectives and insights shared by our presenters and audiences. I am grateful to all the members and faculty who have contributed to the success of the club.” – Canying Wang

As we bid farewell to these seniors, URC members would extend their warmest wishes for their future endeavors in academic research.

URC thanks Professor Ben Davis for initiating the Spring 2023 Research Seminar and providing help in finding student presenters by reaching out to faculty. URC thanks the panelists Monica Abdallah ChE’17 MChE’19, Daniel Galperin ChE’18, Dennis Burgner ChE’18, and Christopher Oyuela, as well as Prof. Amanda Simson for the warm introductions.

URC thanks Renee Ma ChE’25 and Abigail Lin ChE’26 for designing the materials. URC acknowledges Neha Nichakawade ChE’25 and Erika Gregory ME’26 for the physical promotion, and Kayla Lee ChE’26 for all the photos. Other URC organizers include Wesley Wong ChE’24, Tausif Tamim ChE’25, and Naomi Akiyama ChE’23.

Finally, URC thanks JAC for the funding, which allowed us to purchase the materials and provide refreshments.

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