Spring 2024 Department Highlights

ChE 2024 Research Week

This Spring, the Dow Scholars Undergraduate Research (SURE) program led by Patrick Ymele-Leki, Ph.D., chemical engineering department chair, and Steven Cummings, assistant professor of chemistry in the College of Arts and Sciences (COAS), held its second Dow SURE Symposium as part of Howard University Research Month.

The symposium featured tech talks and networking opportunities with Dow scientists. The Dow SURE Scholars and Dow professionals presented their research presentations in the earlier part of the day. The presentations were followed by a keynote address featuring two Dow representatives. An award ceremony closed the successful event.

The Dow SURE Symposium grew significantly from last year, with scientific presentations from 11 Dow professionals and the majority of Dow Scholars presenting their research.

Howard student presenters (pictured at top):

COAS: Sophia Brooks, Makenna Davis, Alexis Duncan, Jordan Gray, Amber Jones, Kaya Moody, Edward Onochie, Raiyan Rashad, Nisha Shrestha, Haley Warren, and Jesenia Wofford

CEA: Ankur Gyawali, Kate Hall, Janet Johnson, Treylin Lewis,  Archarya Sameer, and Marissa Wheeler

Howard faculty mentors:

Dr. Patrick Ymele-Leki, Chemical Engineering

Dr. Steven Cummings, Chemistry, COAS

Dr. Karl Thompson, Microbiology, College of Medicine

Dow SURE coordinators:

Sylvia Hanna, Senior Research Specialist

Juan F. Callejas, Senior R&D TS&D Leader

Dow recruiting team:

Jamaal Washburn


Guerodye Joseph pictured with ChE faculty members Ymele-Leki and Chawla
Guerodye Joseph pictured with ChE faculty members Ymele-Leki and Chawla

Guerodye Joseph (BSChE '24), pictured with department chair Patrick Ymele-Leki, Ph.D. (left) and chemical engineering professor Ramesh Chawla, Ph.D. (right) was named the first recipient of the Dr. Joseph N. Cannon Endowed Scholarship in Chemical Engineering.

“Reflecting on my achievements since enrolling at Howard University, I'm grateful for the strides I have 

made. I truly believe that being at Howard University and in the College of Engineering and Architecture opened more doors for me to land all these opportunities through networking during corporate lobby days, and career fairs. With a degree in chemical engineering, I hold a strong conviction in the promise of my future,” said Joseph.

Joseph N. Cannon, Ph.D., is one of the founding faculty members of the Howard University Department of Chemical Engineering, and one of the seven founders of The National Organization for the Professional Advancement of Black Chemists and Chemical Engineers (NOBCChE). In 2013, NOBCChE established the Joseph N. Cannon Award for Excellence in Chemical Engineering. Following the establishment of the award, Howard University chemical engineering alumni took the initiative to collaborate with the department’s faculty members to establish the Joseph N. Cannon Endowed Scholarship in Chemical Engineering to award academic scholarships to students majoring in chemical engineering.

“I remember when I was struggling financially to get through Howard. The chemical engineering department provided me with scholarship money and summer internships,” said Herb Quaintance (BSChE ‘76), an alumni founder of the scholarship fund. “We can make sure that other students have this same financial opportunity by contributing to Dr. Cannon’s Endowed Scholarship fund and allowing our great ChE Department to help these [chemical engineering] students financially.”

ChE Class of 2024
ChE Class of 2024


Solmaz Tabtabaei, Ph.D., associate professor of chemical engineering, served as faculty advisor to the Class of 2024 in their capstone design presentations. The presentations were delivered in a hybrid format, as in previous years, to fellow students, faculty members, and engineering professionals attending in-person or virtually.

This event also marked the first time that the team was co-advised by Sakhile Ross (MSChE ‘00), principal strategic consultant at Chevron. Through a growing partnership between Chevron and the College of Engineering and Architecture, Ross was able to serve as an adjunct lecturer for the Chemical Engineering Process Design course. Several Chevron professionals also provided supplemental lectures and served as mentors to capstone design teams and judges for the final presentations.

Daryl Roberts
Daryl Roberts with ChE students



Daryl Roberts (BSChE ’91), chief operations and engineering officer at DuPont, gave a seminar to the Class of 2025, as part of a Chemical Engineering Safety course held by chemical engineering professor Ramesh Chawla, Ph.D., one of Roberts’ former professors.

Roberts is a visionary and global leader in the manufacturing industry, with experience in driving improved productivity, business performance, compliance, health and safety, and profitability.



AIChE NCS 2024 Awards
AIChE NCS 2024 Awards







The National Capital Section (NCS) of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers (AIChE) held a joint award ceremony for outstanding chemical engineering students at Howard University and University of Maryland College Park in the Innovation Space of the Mackey Building at Howard University this Spring.

Temiloluwa Akande (BSChE ‘24) and Isaiah Roberts (BSChE ‘24) of Howard University and Elisa Zeng-Mariotti and Jillian Schwartz of University of Maryland were awarded the 2023 NCS Outstanding Student Award.


Research and Chemical Engineering