Justin Zhong receives Student Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Research


Justin Zhong at Texas ChETexas ChE senior, Justin Zhong, is the recipient of the 2018 Student Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Research from the Society for Biomaterials (SFB) for his research on a robust, highly tunable, pH‐responsive nanoscale hydrogel system. Zhong received the award on April 11, 2018, during the SFB Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Georgia.

Zhong’s research was also published in the Journal of Biomedical Materials Research for his paper Tunable poly(methacrylic acid‐co‐acrylamide) nanoparticles through inverse emulsion polymerization. The paper was published on March 6, 2018. Additional authors on the paper, also from the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas at Austin, were John Clegg (Texas Biomedical Engineering), Eric Ander (McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering) and Dr. Nicholas Peppas (McKetta Department of Chemical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Dell Medical School, and Pharmacy).

“Through this award, I was given the opportunity to attend the Society for Biomaterials national conference earlier this month, which has helped me learn so much about the broader field of biomaterials,” says Zhong. “Dr. Peppas has been an incredible mentor to make these kinds of opportunities available for me and I had the amazing chance to conduct an independent research study and write a first-author manuscript as an undergraduate. My graduate student mentor, John Clegg, has also been a fantastic mentor and has helped me expand my confidence and capacity as a researcher.”

Recipients of the Student Awards for Outstanding Research received a certificate, free registration to the 2018 SFB Annual Meeting, travel support up to $500 and consideration for publication of their paper in the Journal for Biomedical Materials Research or Applied Bio Materials.

Justin Zhong is a senior undergraduate researcher in Dr. Nicholas Peppas’ lab. Following graduation, he will attend graduate school in the UC Berkeley/UCSF joint Bioengineering PhD program.

Justin Zhong accepts the award from SFB leadership
 Justin Zhong accepts the Student Award for Outstanding Undergraduate Research at the 2018 Society for Biomaterials Annual Meeting. Pictured left to right: David Kohn, PhD – SFB Immediate Past President; Justin Zhong – Texas ChE Senior; Nicholas Ziats, PhD – SFB Awards, Ceremonies and Nominations Committee Chair.

>>See SFB’s 2018 First Quarter issue of The Torch for more information about Zhong’s award.



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