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Earlier today, the University of Chicago unveiled its new Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering. A $100 million commitment from the Pritzker Foundation elevates the former Institute for Molecular Engineering to school status.

Chicago is optimistic this will expand its leadership and education in the emerging field of molecular engineering. Furthermore, this new school makes Chicago the first American university with a school dedicated to this field. It is also the university’s first new school in three decades.

The school will offer majors and minors for undergraduate students who are enrolled in the College. Additionally, the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering will also offer a doctoral program for graduate students.

University of Chicago President Robert Jimmer summarized, “Like the Institute, the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering will be distinct from other engineering programs, with an organizational structure that transcends traditional boundaries and focuses on societal problems primed for new solutions. The commitment of the Pritzker Foundation will allow the Pritzker School of Molecular Engineering to continue to build its programs in quantum engineering, biotechnology and immuno-engineering, advanced materials, energy storage, and ensuring a clean global water supply. It will support further expansion to address other fundamental problems and promote collaborations among leading researchers from diverse science and engineering disciplines.”

Time will tell how much of a “first mover advantage” the University of Chicago reaps from this move. The university is certainly well positioned to become the preeminent school in this research field.

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