April 23, 2021
Chemical and biomolecular engineering professor Kenneth Schweizer is one of four University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professors elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the oldest honor societies in the nation.
They are among 252 new members elected to the academy this year, including artists, scholars, scientists, and leaders in the public, nonprofit and private sectors.
Schweizer is the Morris Professor of Materials Science and Engineering and a professor of chemistry and chemical and biomolecular engineering at Illinois. He also is affiliated with the Materials Research Lab and the Beckman Institute for Advanced Science and Technology, and earned a Ph.D. in physics at Illinois. The overarching goal of his research is to develop novel molecular-scale statistical mechanical theories of the equilibrium and dynamic properties of polymers, colloids, nanocomposites, elastomers, gels, glasses, and other forms of soft matter, and apply them to understand experiments and assist in the design of new soft materials.
Schweizer has been the chair of the American Physical Society Division of Polymer Physics and associate director of the National Science Foundation Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center for Directed Assembly. Among his numerous awards are the American Physical Society Polymer Physics Prize, John H. Dillon Medal and Fellowship, Hildebrand Award in the Theoretical and Experimental Chemistry of Liquids of the American Chemical Society, the Everitt Award for Teaching Excellence, the Drucker Eminent Faculty Award and the Department of Energy Award for Outstanding Scientific Achievement in Materials Chemistry.
The American Academy of Arts and Sciences was founded in 1780 by John Adams, John Hancock and others who believed the new republic should honor exceptionally accomplished individuals and engage them in advancing the public good.
“We are honoring the excellence of these individuals, celebrating what they have achieved so far and imagining what they will continue to accomplish,” said David Oxtoby, the president of the American Academy. “The past year has been replete with evidence of how things can get worse; this is an opportunity to illuminate the importance of art, ideas, knowledge and leadership that can make a better world.”
Original story by Lois Yoksoulian, Physical Sciences Editor for the News Bureau