NSF NRT Bioelectronics Program

Program Leadership

JONATHAN (JOFF) SILBERG, PhD
NRT Director

Director, Systems, Synthetic, & Physical Biology Graduate Program
Professor of Biosciences, Bioengineering, and Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
joff@rice.edu

LESA TRAN LU, PhD
NRT Program Administrator

Lecturer in Chemistry
Residential Associate, Sid Richardson College
lesa@rice.edu

JOSHUA EYLER, PhD
NRT Executive Committee

Director, Center for Teaching Excellence
Adjunct Associate Professor of Humanities
jeyler@rice.edu

RAFAEL VERDUZCO, PhD
NRT Executive Committee

Director, Rice ToF-SIMS Lab
Associate Professor of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
rafaelv@rice.edu

LISA BISWAL, PhD
NRT Executive Committee

Director, Shared Equipment Authority
Associate Professor of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
Associate Professor of Materials Science & Nanoengineering
biswal@rice.edu

GEORGE N. BENNETT, PhD
NRT Executive Committee

Professor of Biosciences
Professor of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering
gbennett@rice.edu

A major technological revolution is emerging as researchers develop the ability to interface natural and synthetic cellular systems with nanoscale materials to create hybrid cells and materials that communicate electronically. This bioelectronics theme spans interfaces from electronics and organs (neuroengineering, electroceuticals) to connecting microbial sensors and conductive materials (biosensors, electrosynthesis), and encompasses the construction of light-harvesting materials that engage cellular metabolism (synthetic leaves, energetics) and electronic sensor signal processing.

This bioelectronics program is designed to provide students training that spans: (i) past interdisciplinary innovations in bioelectronics, (ii) theoretical underpinnings of interdisciplinarity that is critical to bioelectronics advancements, (iii) creation of cohesive teams and community building, (iv) frameworks for achieving conceptual understanding across disciplines, and (v) strategies to understand the needs of bioelectronics stakeholders. Additionally, this program provides training in effective communication, teaching and mentorship, conflict resolution, leadership and management, responsible conduct in research, and outreach.

bioelectronic photo

We encourage current and incoming Rice University graduate students to apply for this program. Incoming students must be admitted by a participating department to be eligible for this program.

Application Instructions

Due to the current coronavirus situation, the deadline for receiving applications is May 15, 2020. If you have any questions about the application, please contact bioelectronics@rice.edu.

To submit an application to the NSF NRT Bioelectronics Program, you must:

  1. Complete the application form (2020 NSF NRT Bioelectronics Program Application), which includes three short statements about your interest in bioelectronics, your experience with teamwork, and how this program will support your career goals.
    • On the application form, please indicate that you give permission to your department to share your graduate program application. All application materials will remain confidential and will be for program review and assessment purposes only.
  2. Upload transcripts from all undergraduate and graduate institutions (PDF format). If you have more than one transcript (undergraduate and graduate), then you should combine them into a single PDF file before uploading.
  3. Upload your current curriculum vitae (PDF format). This should include all college education, academic honors, fellowships, scholarships, research or related work experience, and publications/patents.
  4. Submit a minimum of two letters of recommendation to bioelectronics@rice.eduLetters should be written by individuals who can speak to your ability to solve problems, work with others, perform research, and/or innovate.
    • If you are a current Rice student, one of your letters must come from your current Research Advisor, who should endorse your application and indicate why they think you should participate in the program.
    • If you are a matriculating Rice student, the letters of recommendation included in your graduate program application will be considered, upon your consent (see Step 1). If you feel you need to include an additional letter of recommendation, you may submit it to bioelectronics@rice.edu.

Please note that all application documents must be submitted as PDFs and must be uploaded at the time of submission. Enter ALL required fields, upload documents and press the “Submit Application” button. Upon submission, you will see an acknowledgement confirming your application was received.