Sujata Bhatia

Sujata Bhatia

  • Assistant Director for Undergraduate Studies in Biomedical Engineering
  • Lecturer on Biomedical Engineering
  • Associate, Harvard Kennedy School of Government
  • Assistant Dean, Harvard Summer School
  • Administrative Fellow, Office of the Assistant to the President, Harvard University

Profile

Biography:

Sujata K. Bhatia, MD, PhD, PE is a physician, bioengineer, and professionally licensed chemical engineer who serves on the teaching faculty of biomedical engineering and executive education at Harvard University.  She is the Assistant Director for Undergraduate Studies in Biomedical Engineering at Harvard; she is the academic advisor for all Harvard undergraduate students in bioengineering and biomedical engineering.  She is also a Lecturer on Biomedical Engineering.  In addition, she is an Associate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government for the Science, Technology, and Globalization Project; she works with students on projects for medical innovation in Africa, as well as global engineering education. She is additionally a faculty member in the Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education program on Innovation for Economic Development.  Sujata has personally mentored several Harvard undergraduates to complete innovative research and design projects that advance the field of bioengineering.  She has served as an Assistant Dean for the Harvard Summer School, for summer sessions in 2012, 2013, and 2014.  She has demonstrated a strong commitment not only to biomedical engineering research, but also to education, community outreach, and student life. 

Sujata graduated from the University of Delaware in 1999 with bachelor’s degrees in biology, biochemistry and chemical engineering and a master’s degree in chemical engineering; she earned all four degrees in only four years. Sujata then trained in the MD/PhD combined degree program at the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine and graduated in 2003, completing both degrees in four years.  Her doctoral thesis work lent insights into immune cell and cancer cell migration, and was published in several journals, including Cancer Research, Biotechnology Progress, and Biophysical Journal.  From 2003 to 2011, Sujata was a principal investigator at the DuPont Company; her projects included the development of bioadhesives for wound closure, and development of minimally invasive medical devices.  She worked on a team to develop a new surgical sealant; this system can prevent leakage from surgical wounds, and can be used to stop bleeding from traumatic wounds.  She also worked on a team to develop microspheres for the minimally invasive treatment of cancerous tumors.  She then worked on omega-3 fatty acids for heart health.  Her industrial experience spans medical device and biotechnology product development, clinical trials management, intellectual property, leadership of multidisciplinary teams, and industry-academic partnerships.  In 2011, Sujata was offered a position on the teaching faculty of biomedical engineering at Harvard University, and is now the Assistant Director of Undergraduate Studies in Biomedical Engineering, as well as an Assistant Dean of the Harvard Summer School, and an Associate of the Harvard Kennedy School of Government.

In 2010, Sujata wrote and published a textbook, “Biomaterials for Clinical Applications,” which discusses opportunities for both biomaterials scientists and physicians to alleviate diseases worldwide.  The book appeared on Amazon.com best-seller lists for Biotechnology, Clinical Chemistry and Biomedical Engineering.  The book was also selected as Innovation Book of the Week by the Harvard Science, Technology, and Globalization Project.  In 2011, she published another book, “Engineering Biomaterials for Regenerative Medicine.”  The book appeared on Amazon.com Kindle best-seller lists for Polymer Science, Polymer Chemistry, and Microbiology.  In 2012, she published two books with her Harvard students, “Medical Devices and Biomaterials for the Developing World: Case Studies in Ghana and Nicaragua,” and “Naturally Based Biomaterials and Therapeutics: The Case of India.”

Sujata has established a positive reputation nationally and internationally, and has won numerous awards in recognition of her professional accomplishments and community outreach efforts.  She has served on panels and committees for the National Academy of Engineering, National Aeronautics and Space Administration, National Academy of Sciences, National Science Foundation, Institute of Medicine, American Association for the Advancement of Science, United States Department of Health and Human Services, and United States Department of State.  In 1999, Sujata was awarded the University of Delaware Woman of Promise award.  Seven short years later, she was awarded the 2006 University of Delaware Presidential Citation for Outstanding Achievement, an award given to University of Delaware graduates of the past 20 years who exhibit great promise in their professional career and public service activities.  In 2007, Sujata was inducted into the Hall of Fame of Delaware Women.  At the national level, Sujata was invited to participate in the U.S. Frontiers of Engineering symposium in 2005.  While this honor is given by the National Academy of Engineering to the nation’s top 100 engineers ages 30-45, Sujata was selected for the honor at age 27.  At the international level, Sujata was selected to participate in the 2006 Japan-U.S. Frontiers of Engineering symposium; this honor is given to the nation’s top 30 engineers ages 30-45, and Sujata was selected at age 28.  She co-organized the 2007 Japan-U.S. Frontiers of Engineering meeting.  In 2008, she was the invited keynote speaker at the National Science Olympiad Invitational.  In 2009, she was honored with a Strong, Smart, and Bold Award by Girls Incorporated of Delaware. 

Sujata has been recognized with multiple awards for excellence in teaching, mentoring, and advising.  In 2012, she won an award from the Harvard University President’s Innovation Fund for Faculty, in recognition of her innovative approaches to biomedical engineering education.  In 2012, she was awarded the John R. Marquand Award for Exceptional Advising and Counseling of Harvard Students, the highest award in Harvard College for excellence in advising.  Finally, in 2012, she was selected as a Resident Fellow in the Harvard Administrative Fellowship Program, a program that prepares administrators for leadership positions in the university.  She was awarded a Certificate of Teaching Excellence from Harvard University's Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning in both 2012 and 2013.  In 2013, Sujata was awarded the Capers and Marion McDonald Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising, the highest award in the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences for excellence in advising.  She was also awarded the Star Family Prize for Excellence in Advising, a distinguished award from Harvard University for exemplary intellectual and personal guidance of undergraduate students.  In 2013, Sujata represented the United States at the Global Grand Challenges Summit, a joint initiative of the U.S. National Academy of Engineering, the U.K. Royal Academy of Engineering, and the Chinese Academy of Engineering.  In 2013, she was selected by the U.S. National Academy of Engineering for Frontiers of Engineering Education, a recognition for the most innovative engineering educators in the nation.  In 2014, she was voted by the Harvard College Class of 2014 as a Harvard Yearbook Favorite Professor.  She has delivered invited lectures at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, the Harvard Medical School, and the Harvard College Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa. 

Contact Information

Office:206C Pierce Hall
Email:sbhatia@seas.harvard.edu
Office Phone:(617) 496-2840

Primary Teaching Area

Bioengineering

Positions & Employment

Assistant Director for Undergraduate Studies and Lecturer on Biomedical Engineering, Harvard University

May 2011 - Present

I serve on the teaching faculty of biomedical engineering at Harvard, as a Lecturer on Biomedical Engineering.  I am also the Assistant Director of Undergraduate Studies in Biomedical Engineering.  I advise bioengineering seniors on their individual senior design projects, and work with students to complete visionary research and design of new biomaterials and medical devices.

I am deeply committed to teaching, mentoring, and advising students at Harvard College.  I serve as a Faculty Associate and Senior Common Room member at Harvard Leverett House, a Senior Common Room member at Harvard Adams House, a Tutor at Harvard Currier House, and a Proctor at Harvard Matthews Hall.  I serve on the Board of Freshman Advisers for Harvard College.

Associate, Harvard Kennedy School of Government

January 2013 - Present

I work as an engineering expert with the Science, Technology, and Globalization Project at the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard.  My work focuses on medical device innovations for the developing world, particularly Africa.  In addition, I am working to educate students and government leaders on Grand Challenges for Engineering.  I teach in the Harvard Kennedy School Executive Education program on Innovation for Economic Development.

Assistant Dean, Harvard Summer School

Summers 2012 - 2014

For three consecutive summers, I have served as an academic adviser and mentor to students enrolled in summer session at Harvard.  I am a member of the Deans' Council, and supervise a staff of twenty residential proctors.

Professor of the Practice of Chemical and Biological Engineering, Tufts University

May 2011 - August 2013

While teaching full-time at Harvard University, I served as a part-time Professor of the Practice of Chemical and Biological Engineering at Tufts for two years.  I taught introductory engineering as well as senior design to chemical engineering students at Tufts University.  I advised seniors on their design projects, and worked with chemical engineering students on product and process development.

Adjunct Professor of Chemical Engineering, University of Delaware

September 2009 - May 2011

While working at DuPont, I taught biochemical engineering and biomedical engineering courses to undergraduates and graduate students at the University of Delaware in the Department of Chemical Engineering. My courses included CHEG 620 – Biochemical Engineering; CHEG 667 – Biomaterials for Gene and Drug Delivery; and EGGG 101 – Introduction to Engineering.  I enjoyed bringing my practical experience to the classroom.

Principal Investigator, DuPont Applied BioSciences

September 2003 - May 2011

I spent over seven years as a scientific investigator with DuPont, gaining experience in biomaterials research, product development, intellectual property, and clinical trials. From 2003 to 2008, I worked on developing tissue adhesives for closure of wounds, as well as microspheres for the minimally invasive treatment of tumors. In 2009, I spent a year on technology licensing for cancer drug discovery. In 2010 and 2011, I led clinical trials of omega-3 fatty acids for heart health.

Other Experience & Professional Membership

Professional Registration:

Registered Professional Engineer, State of Massachusetts

     Chemical Engineer, License No. 49908

Professional Leadership:

2014 – National Science Foundation, Panelist for Graduate Research Fellowship Program

2014 – United States Department of Defense, Panelist for National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship Program

2013 – present – United States Department of State, Bureau of International Information Programs, Speaker and Specialist

2013 – present – World Health Organization, Global Initiative for Emergency and Essential Surgical Care

2013 – present – National Science Foundation, Global Women Scholars Network

2013 – present – Global Public Service Academies, Faculty Leader

2013 – present – Center of Excellence for Polymer Materials and Technologies, Global Biopolymer Network

2013 – National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), Focus Group on Space Exploration in Education

2013 – United States Department of State/United States Agency for International Development (USAID), Session Organizer on STEM Diasporas for Global Diaspora Forum

2013 – United States Department of State/American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS)/National Academy of Sciences/National Academy of Engineering, Networks of Diasporas in Engineering and Sciences (NODES) in partnership with Ireland's Presidency of the Council of the European Union 2013, Invited Panelist on Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM)

2013 – Institute of Medicine (IOM)/United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)/Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Invited Co-Organizer of Health Industry Bootcamp for Health Data Initiative Forum

2013 – Institute of Medicine (IOM)/United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)/Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Judge for National Apps Competition for Health Data Initiative Forum

2013 – Universities Allied for Essential Medicines (UAEM), Expert Group for Forum on Global Access Licensing of Medical Technologies

2013 – International Biopolymer Workshop, Jomo Kenyatta University of Agriculture and Technology in Kenya, Faculty Member

2013 – National Science Foundation, Alliances for Graduate Education and the Professoriate PROMISE Summer Success Institute, Mentor-In-Residence

2013 – National Science Foundation, Rocky Mountain Science and Sustainability Network, Academy Faculty Member

2013 – ASME Global Congress on Nanoengineering for Medicine and Biology, Session Chair on Biomimetic Nanostructures for Engineering New Tissues

2013 – MIT Educational Studies Program, Seminar Teacher for Splash Outreach Curriculum

2013 – MIT Global Poverty Initiative/Harvard Developers for Development, International Development Hackathon Judge

2013 – MIT Entrepreneurship Center, Hacking Medicine and Athenahealth Hackathon Judge

2013 – Walt Disney/Marvel Studios and Discovery Science Center, Marvel's Iron Man 3: Inventor and Innovator Fair Judge

2013 – Americas Datafest, International Hackathon Judge

2012 – present – National Science Foundation, Advisory Board for Integrative Graduate Education and Research Traineeship (IGERT) Program on Systems Biology of Cells in Engineered Environments at the University of Delaware

2012 – present – Guitars in the Classroom: An Initiative of the United Nations (UN) Music as a Global Resource for Millennium Development Goals, Faculty Fellow

2012 – Institute of Medicine (IOM)/United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)/Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), Panelist for Health Data Initiative Forum

2012 – American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), Reviewer for Indo-US Science and Technology Forum

2012 – Chilean Government Commission for Scientific and Technological Development (CONICYT), Review Committee for National Fund for Scientific and Technological Development (FONDECYT)

2012 – Oak Ridge Associated Universities, Reviewer for Nazarbayev University Research Council in Kazakhstan 

2012 – present – BioEnvironmental Polymer Society, Professional Member

     o    2012 Session Chair on Biobased Hydrogels

2012 – present – Innovation Economy Expo, Advisory Committee

2011 – present – Scientista Foundation for Women in Science, Technology, Engineering & Math (STEM), Board Member

2011 – present – Biomedical Engineering Society, Professional Member

     o    2011 – present – Faculty Advisor for Harvard College Section of Biomedical Engineering Society

2011 – present – Young Professionals Chronic Disease Network, Member

2011 – National Science Foundation, Panelist for Partnerships For Innovation – Materials, Manufacturing & Construction

2011 – United States-Portugal Clinical Research Master Program at Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NOVA Medical School), Faculty Member

2011 – IEEE Engineering in Medicine and Biology Society, Session Co-Chair on Novel Approaches to Biomedical Engineering Education

2010 – American Heart Association, Professional Member

2009 – National Academy of Sciences, Review Committee for Ohio Biomedical Research & Commercialization Program

2009 – American Association for Cancer Research, Professional Member

2008 – 2011 – National Science Foundation, Advisory Board for Innovative Technology Experiences for Students and Teachers (ITEST) Nanotechnology Program at the University of Pennsylvania

2007 – 2011 – State of Delaware, Commission for Women

2007 – 2009 – American Diabetes Association of Delaware and Eastern Maryland, Board Member

     o    2007 DuPont Volunteer Recognition Award

2007 – Chemical Heritage Foundation, Delegate for Gordon Cain Conference on New Chemical Bodies

2006 – present – American Chemical Society, Active Member

     o    2013 Panelist on Academic Life for Graduate Research Symposium of Division of Organic Chemistry

     o    2009 ChemLuminary Award for Outstanding Continuing Public Relations Program of a Local Section

     o    2009 ChemLuminary Award for Outstanding Industrial Involvement

     o    2009 National Chemistry Week Chair

     o    2008 Delaware Section Chair

     o    2008 ChemLuminary Award for Outstanding Local Section Younger Chemists Committee

     o    2008 ChemLuminary Award for Local Section Government Affairs

     o    2008 ChemLuminary Award for Outstanding Industrial Involvement

     o    2007 Delaware Section Chair-Elect

2006 – 2011 – Next Generation of the Delaware Community Foundation

     o    2008 DuPont Volunteer Recognition Award

2006 – 2011 – University of Delaware, Engineering Alumni Association, Board of Directors

     o    2009 Chair of the Board of Directors

     o    2007 Treasurer of the Board of Directors

2006 – 2008 – State of Delaware, Governor’s Council on Lifestyle and Fitness

2005 – National Academy of Sciences, Delegate for Roundtable on Biomedical Engineering Materials and Applications

2004 – National Academy of Engineering, Delegate for Mid-Atlantic Regional Symposium

2003 – 2009 – University of Delaware, Women in Engineering, Professional Mentor

2003 – 2004 – Explore Engineering Program for Female High School Students, Professional Mentor

1999 – 2004 – University of Pennsylvania, Science & Technology Wing (STwing), Graduate Residential Advisor

1999 – 2004 – University of Pennsylvania, PennScience Research Journal, Founder and Science Editor

1997 – present – American Institute of Chemical Engineers, Senior Member

     o    2013 – present – Career and Education Operating Council (CEOC)

     o    2013 – present – CEOC Liaison to Student Chapters Committee

     o    2013 – present – CEOC Liaison to Student Chapters Committee International Subcommittee

     o    2013 – present – Women's Initiatives Committee

     o    2011 – present – Faculty Advisor for Harvard College Section of Society of Biological Engineers

     o    2007 Wilmington Section Chair

Invited Reviewer for Journals:

[1]     Acta Biomaterialia

[2]     Advanced Drug Delivery Reviews

[3]     Applied Mathematical Modelling

[4]     Biomacromolecules (American Chemical Society)

[5]     Biomaterials

[6]     Biomaterials Science (Royal Society of Chemistry)

[7]     Bioresource Technology

[8]     Biotechnology and Bioengineering

[9]     Biotechnology Journal

[10]     Current Nutrition and Food Science

[11]     Frontiers in Cancer Molecular Targets and Therapeutics

[12]     International Journal of Molecular Sciences

[13]     Journal of Biotechnology

[14]     Journal of Controlled Release

[15]    Journal of Materials Chemistry (Royal Society of Chemistry)

[16]    Journal of the Royal Society Interface (The Royal Society)

[17]    Langmuir (American Chemical Society)

[18]    Molecular BioSystems (Royal Society of Chemistry)

[19]    Recent Patents on Regenerative Medicine

[20]    Soft Matter (Royal Society of Chemistry)

Honors

2014 – Harvard University, Harvard Yearbook Class of 2014 Favorite Professor

2014 – TEDxUNC University of North Carolina, Invited Speaker at TEDx Conference

2013 – Harvard University, Capers and Marion McDonald Award for Excellence in Mentoring and Advising

2013 – Harvard University, Star Family Prize for Excellence in Advising Winner

2013 – Harvard University, Invited Commencement Speaker for Master of Liberal Arts Graduation Ceremony

2013 – Harvard University, Certificate of Teaching Excellence from Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning

2013 – White House, Invited to Champions of Change Ceremony

2013 – National Academy of Engineering, Frontiers of Engineering Education (one of 73)

2013 – National Academy of Engineering-National Academy of Sciences-Institute of Medicine, Keck Futures

2013 – National Academy of Engineering, Invited Participant in U.S.-U.K.-China Global Grand Challenges Summit

2013 – United States Department of State, Invited Participant in Global Diaspora Forum

2013 – American Association for the Advancement of Science, Invited Speaker

2013 – MIT Entrepreneurship Center, Invited Participant in “Hacking Medicine” Conference (one of 100)

2013 – Women of Color STEM Outstanding Achievement Award, Technology Rising Star

2013 – Christiana High School, Golden Anniversary Star Graduate

2012 – Harvard University, John R. Marquand Award for Exceptional Advising and Counseling of Harvard Students

2012 – Harvard University, Star Family Prize for Excellence in Advising Finalist

2012 – Harvard University, Certificate of Teaching Excellence from Derek Bok Center for Teaching and Learning

2012 – Harvard University, President’s Innovation Fund for Faculty Award

2012 – Harvard University, Resident Fellow in Administrative Fellowship Program

2012 – MIT Entrepreneurship Center, Invited Participant in “Hacking Medicine” Conference (one of 80)

2012 – Phi Beta Kappa at Harvard College, Invited Keynote Speaker

2012 – BioEnvironmental Polymer Society, Invited Keynote Speaker

2012 – National Collegiate Inventors and Innovators Alliance, Course and Program Grant

2011 – MIT Entrepreneurship Center, Invited Participant in Inaugural “Hacking Medicine” Conference (one of 100)

2009 – Girls Incorporated of Delaware, Strong Smart & Bold Award

2009 – American Association of University Women, Invited Keynote Speaker

2009 – Emerging Leaders Alliance, Invited Participant

2008 – National Science Olympiad, Invited Keynote Speaker

2007 – National Academy of Engineering, Japan-U.S. Frontiers of Engineering co-organizer

2007 – Hall of Fame of Delaware Women

2006 – National Academy of Engineering, Japan-U.S. Frontiers of Engineering (one of 40)

2006 – University of Delaware, Presidential Citation for Outstanding Achievement

2005 – National Academy of Engineering, U.S. Frontiers of Engineering (one of 100)

2003 – American Chemical Society, Catalyx Technologies Award for Best Poster

2002 – Lymphatic Research Foundation, Andrew Moisoff Young Investigator Award

2001 – American Institute of Chemical Engineers, First Place in Student Poster Paper Competition

1999 – Whitaker Foundation Graduate Fellowship in Biomedical Engineering

1999 – National Defense Science and Engineering Graduate Fellowship

1999 – National Science Foundation Graduate Fellowship

1999 – Howard Hughes Medical Institute Predoctoral Fellowship

1999 – NIH Medical Scientist Training Program (MSTP) MD/PhD Grant

1999 – Tau Beta Pi National Fellowship

1999 – Phi Kappa Phi National Fellowship