The University of Chicago announces a $100 million commitment from the Pritzker Foundation to support the new Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering, reportedly becoming the first university in the United States with a school dedicated to this emerging field. The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering will expand the university’s research, education, technology development and impact in molecular engineering, which builds on advances in basic science to design technology from the molecular level up. It is the university’s first new school in three decades and its first school in engineering.
The new commitment from the Pritzker Foundation builds on the success of efforts by the university and Argonne National Laboratory, which partnered in 2011 to establish the Institute for Molecular Engineering. The Institute, supported by the Pritzker Foundation since its inception, will be elevated to the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering in recognition of its success, impact and the ongoing and planned major expansion of its research and education programs, and the Pritzker Foundation’s increased support. The Pritzker Foundation is made up of four trustees from the Pritzker family: Tom, Nick, Penny and Gigi Pritzker.
Like the institute, the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering will be distinct from other engineering programs, with an organizational structure that focuses on societal problems primed for new solutions, according to the university. The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering will continue to build programs in quantum engineering, biotechnology and immuno-engineering, advanced materials, energy storage and ensuring a clean global water supply.
The Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering is organized around interdisciplinary research themes with the goal of developing new kinds of solutions for pressing global challenges, including the search for sustainable energy, immunotherapy-based approaches to cancer and virtually “unhackable” communications networks. By expanding an approach started at the institute, which brings scientists together to address important multifaceted problems rather than fixed disciplines, the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering aims to more effectively address issues that require integrated, convergent approaches.
For more information, visit: www.uchicago.edu