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Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering

Civil Engineering Building, which houses the department of chemical and environmental engineering

We offer BS, MS and PhD degrees in both chemical and environmental engineering. Our programs are large enough to attract recruiters from a variety of industries, including consulting firms, government, manufacturing, petroleum, semiconductors and utilities – but small enough for individual attention. We encourage our undergraduates to become involved in research projects funded by industry, the Department of Energy, the National Science Foundation and other organizations.

Don Pettit's official astronaut portrait; photo courtesy of NASAThe University of Arizona has seen six of its alumni reach for the stars – literally – as U.S. astronauts.

Among them was Don Pettit, who received his doctorate in chemical engineering from the UA in 1983, where he studied heat, mass and momentum transport and developed instrumentation for measuring the distribution of particles in chemical systems.

For aspiring astronauts, Pettit – who applied for the program four times over 13 years – has this advice: “Put out really good effort in your field, apply to the astronaut program and don’t take ‘no’ for an answer.” 

Photo courtesy of NASA

Sharing Tribes app open on an iPhoneAnita D. Bhappu, who received a bachelor's degree in chemical engineering from the UA in 1991 and now serves as an associate professor of retailing and consumer sciences in the Norton School of Family and Consumer Sciences, has created a new method for engaging employees in the modern workplace.

Her software-as-a-service platform Sharing Tribes connects co-workers through a private company marketplace to borrow and lend goods and volunteer services. From lawn mowers to ladders, the idea behind Sharing Tribes is to unite employees across generations and motivate them to build an inclusive coworker community.

She and her colleagues have licensed the invention through Tech Launch Arizona.

2016 WateReuse Arizona Project of the Year trophyA pilot wastewater-treatment system designed and tested by the University of Arizona, the global engineering firm CH2M, and Tucson Water could aid in Arizona’s looming shortage of drinking water – caused by continued drought in the Colorado River Basin and increasing urban populations.  

“The evaluation of alternative methods for water reuse is critical to our state and our region,” said project co-investigator Shane Snyder, UA professor of chemical and environmental engineering and member of the UA BIO5 Institute. “We have demonstrated a novel design that is more efficient and effective than conventional water reuse systems.” Snyder’s co-principal investigators included UA professor of chemical and environmental engineering Bob Arnold.

Snyder, Arnold and their collaborators received the...

With nine collaborative learning spaces on campus, thousands of students and hundreds of faculty now have the ability to learn and teach through active learning with the help of new technology.

University Distinguished Professor Paul Blowers was one of the first faculty members to make the intimidating transition from a lecture hall to an open space.

"The night before was terrifying because if you're behind a podium you're safe," Blowers said. "But then you get a little more comfortable with it and now I teach all but one of my classes this semester in a collaborative learning space."

Jude Udeozor in an interview with The Daily Wildcat. Photo by Heather Newberry/The Daily WildcatJude Udeozor, a second-year graduate student pursuing a master’s degree in chemical engineering, has been named the new president of the UA Graduate and Professional Student Council. He was sworn in on Sept. 27.

One of the biggest strengths Udeozor thinks he will bring to the table is his ability to build relationships. “There is something about building relationships where you can easily walk to [administrators'] offices and have those conversations and they be willing to help you.”

He addressed his new constituency in a letter to The Daily Wildcat campus newspaper.


Portrait of David LopezDavid Lopez, a master's degree student in chemical engineering, is one of the UA College of Engineering's latest Bridge to the Doctorate fellowship winners.

The program aims to increase diversity among domestic students planning to pursue doctorates in STEM fields. It provides tuition, professional development, research and academic study opportunities, and intensive support from faculty mentors.

Mojtaba Azadi Aghdam runs samples on a mass spectrometer in Shane Snyder’s lab.The National Water Research Institute has awarded environmental engineering student Mojtaba Azadi Aghdam a 2016-2017 NWRI Graduate Fellowship, to support his research on novel brine precipitation with the aim of higher water recovery.

This is the latest of several prestigious scholarships for Azadi Aghdam, a third-year doctoral student who works with professor Shane Snyder

Study abroad students gaze at frescos alongside other visitors inside the Duomo di Orvieto in Orvieto, Italy, on May 27, 2016. Photo by Alex McIntyre/The Daily WildcatStudying abroad offers one of the most eye-opening opportunities for undergraduate students.

And chemical engineering junior Leah Kaplan took full advantage of the opportunity, spending time in Antigua, Guatemala. 

Kaplan explained that not only did this program allow her to work more with her major, but she also became exposed to the rich and complicated history of Guatemala. “I volunteered on an organic farm and helped teach English at a local school.”


Photo courtesy of Alex McIntyre/The Daily Wildcat

On Aug. 31rofessor of naval science and Colonel Patrick Wall, converses with ROTC member Alexander Heydt on Wednesday, Aug. 31. UA's special collections gave UA NROTC a special tour of the USS Arizona exhibit. Photo by Jesus Barrera/The Daily Wildcat, the UA Special Collections faculty and curators hosted a special tour through their new USS Arizona exhibit for UA's Navy ROTC.

Among the attendees was Cody Maddox, an active Navy sailor on the STA-21 program studying chemical engineering. 

“It is really important to know your traditions; know the heritage,” Maddox said. “The battle ship was named after this state; you should have a little bit of pride of what those...

Warren Kadoya, a student in the environmental engineering master's degree program, has received the 2016 Dr. W. Wesley Eckenfelder Jr. Scholarship from Brown and Caldwell.

Kadoya works with professors Jim Field and Reyes Sierra on the use of bacteria in the removal of explosives, pesticides, and pharmaceuticals in soil and groundwater.

University of Arizona College of Engineering