Principal Investigator

Ramya Kumar Bio2

Ramya Kumar, PhD

Colorado School of Mines
Office: 139 Alderson Hall

B.E. (Hons.) Chemical Engineering
BITS Pilani, Pilani Campus, 2009

Curriculum Vitae

Ramya Kumar was born in Madurai, India and raised in the coastal city of Chennai (Madras), where she completed her schooling.

Education and training

  • Postdoc, Dept of Chemistry, University of Minnesota, 2021
  • PhD, Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan, 2018
  • B.E. (Hons.) Chemical Engineering, 2009

Professional Experience

  • Assistant Professor, Department of Chemical and Biological Engineering (Jan 2022 onwards)

Awards & Honors

Ramya was fortunate to be awarded the Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship through a university-level competition, which allowed her to chart an independent and ambitious course of research in her final year. She also received a Procter & Gamble Team Innovation Award, the Towner Prize for Outstanding Graduate Student Instructor and several poster prizes.

  • PMSE Future Faculty Scholar, 2019 [PMSE]
  • Spring career development award, 2019 [UMN Postdoctoral Association]
  • Finalist, AIChE graduate student awards, Biomaterials, 2017 [AIChE]
  • Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship, 2017-18, University of Michigan [Rackham]
  • Departmental nominee, 2018, Richard & Eleanor Towner Prize for Outstanding PhD research, College of Engineering, University of Michigan
  • Poster award, Second Place, Material Science & Engineering session, Engineering Graduate Symposium, 2016, University of Michigan [EGS UMICH]
  • Procter & Gamble Team Innovation Award, 2016, 40th Annual Macro Symposium, Department of Macromolecular Science & Engineering, University of Michigan. Presented a poster that was recognized for innovative and collaborative research.
  • Richard & Eleanor Towner Prize for outstanding Graduate Student Instructor (GSI), 2016, University of Michigan. For exceptional & innovative teaching. [UMich Engineering]
  • Poster award, First Place, Material & Chemical Technology session,Engineering Graduate Symposium, 2014, University of Michigan [EGS UMICH]
  • College of Engineering fellowship for incoming students from Department of Chemical Engineering, University of Michigan, September-December 2012.
  • Monali Dey Memorial Award, BITS Pilani, December 2008, alumni memorial award for the most outstanding chemical engineering undergraduate in a graduating class

Current Lab Members

Jessica Lawson
Jessica Lawson
PhD Student  

Jessica received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in Materials Science and Engineering in Spring 2022. There, she performed undergraduate research in designing polymers for 3D printing using frontal polymerization (at Prof. Nancy Sottos’ lab). She is currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Materials Science, focusing on developing self-assembled polymer systems for biomaterial applications. Her research interests are primarily in polymer synthesis and characterization. Some of her interests outside of research include cooking, baking, playing soccer and volleyball with friends.

Dina Liacopoulos
Dina Liacopoulos
PhD Student  

Dina Liacopoulos graduated from Virginia Polytechnical University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Materials Science Engineering in the spring of 2021 with a focus on polymers. Her past research has been in diverse areas including biomechanics of skittering frogs (Dr. Jake Socha), chitosan hydrogels for burn wounds (Dr. Johan Foster), and composite lattice structures for ballistic defense (Dr. Alan Druschitz). She intends to complete a PhD in Materials Science focusing on Bayesian design of polymeric gene delivery vehicles. Her interest lies in studying the degradation of polymers to be used for biomedical, sustainability, and green engineering applications. Her long-term goal is to work for a national laboratory.

Megan Van De Graaf
Megan Van De Graaf
Undergraduate Student

I’m a senior in Chemical Engineering with a minor in biomedical engineering. I’m also on the Women’s Varsity Basketball team here at Mines and due to COVID, I now have an extra year of eligibility that I plan to use to earn my master’s degree in Engineering & Technology Management at Mines. Previously, I have researched with Dr. Domaille on a drug for kidney transplant patients and interned as a process engineer at Merrick & Company.

Aryelle Wright
Aryelle Wright
Undergraduate Student


Hello! I am a pre-med student-athlete majoring in Quantitative Bioscience Engineering. I plan to graduate with my B.S. in May 2023. I also plan to graduate with my M.S. in Quantitative Bioscience Engineering in May 2024.