Notre Dame-Purdue Soft Matter & Polymers Symposium

After a 2-year hiatus, the University of Notre Dame and Purdue University are excited to resume the 7th annual Notre Dame-Purdue Soft Matter & Polymers Symposium on Saturday, October 29, from 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (ET) in the Jordan Hall of Science on Notre Dame’s campus.  

Faculty and students will come together to discuss joint research interests and accomplishments in areas surrounding soft matter and polymers. Through the generosity of symposium sponsors, participation will not require a registration fee. This allows students and postdocs to participate in this valuable training opportunity and share their research with the regional scientific community. All researchers will benefit from this unique experience, as it also will focus on fostering research collaborations, scientific networking, and above-all joint camaraderie.


During this one-day symposium, presentations will be given by Notre Dame and Purdue faculty focused on the general synthesis and characterization of synthetic soft materials and their broad applications, as well as current challenges and future opportunities. Students and postdocs will also discuss their research during the afternoon poster session and networking event.

Celia Leal

The Keynote lecture will be presented by Cecilia Leal, Associate Professor and Racheff Faculty Scholar in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests include soft condensed matter, biomaterials, complex fluids, biomimetic materials, X-ray scattering, drug and gene delivery, and lipid-nucleic acid constructs.

For the complete agenda and other details, including the keynote abstract, please visit: Soft Matter & Polymers Symposium.


This event is open to the Notre Dame and Purdue research communities, as well as other regional institutions that have an interest in participating. All participants should register by October 17 at the link below. Registration includes a section for students and postdocs to sign up to give a poster presentation.


For questions or additional information, please contact members of the Organizing Committee.

Organizing Committee

Lead organizers are Notre Dame professors Matthew Webber, Keating-Crawford Collegiate Professor of Engineering and Associate Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and Yichun Wang, Assistant Professor of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, with assistance by Purdue University faculty Letian Dou, Charles Davidson Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering, Jianguo Mei, Richard and Judith Wien Associate Professor of Chemistry, and Brett Savoie, Charles Davidson Associate Professor of Chemical Engineering.


This annual event is jointly sponsored by the University of Notre Dame and Purdue University. The University of Notre Dame sponsors of the event are the College of Engineering, College of Science, Department of Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry, Notre Dame Nanoscience and Technology, ND Energy, and Notre Dame Research.

Symposium History and Vision

The symposium was created by Haifeng Gao, Associate Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry at the University of Notre Dame, in 2014. Over the years, it has evolved into an annual event between Notre Dame and Purdue University with invited speakers and guests from both institutions and neighboring universities. Presentations are given by faculty and invited speakers, and students and postdocs present their research during an afternoon poster session and networking reception. Gao’s vision was to showcase the strong research cluster being built at Notre Dame in the area of soft materials and to foster research collaborations with regional institutions. This vision continues today with several collaborative research efforts being nucleated, existing collaborations being showcased, and multi-PI grants being outlined throughout the breaks.

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