A man wearing a red shirt looks at the camera.

Tianran Chen, a fourth-year Macromolecular Science and Engineering (MACR) Ph.D. student, was awarded the 2020 Lew Erwin Extrusion Division Scholarship from the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE).

Chen is a member of Donald Baird’s research group in the Department of Chemical Engineering. Chen’s research focuses on developing a recyclable, lightweight, and high-performance composite material for use in traditional and additive manufacturing. The novel fiber composite material that Chen is researching could have applications in the automotive and aerospace industries.

SPE established this $5,000 scholarship to recognize the outstanding achievements of a Ph.D. candidate pursuing research in polymer extrusion. Scholarship recipients must present a paper on their research at SPE’s ANTEC.

Chen also encouraged his fellow MACR and MII students to apply for SPE scholarships in 2021. Last year, MII-affiliated student Callie Zawaski also won the Lew Erwin Extrusion Division Scholarship, and MACR students Priya Venkatraman and Bradley Sutliff also won scholarships