Status: PhD candidate
Hometown: Warri (Nigeria) and Queens, NY
Department: Chemical Engineering
Onajite Shemi, PhD candidate in chemical engineering at Michigan, has her sights set on working for a chemical or pharmaceutical company, and aims to be a research and development director. She chose to come to Michigan to develop new skills as a chemical engineer and explore what she can contribute to the field of research.
Onajite’s research aims to advance complex fluids and colloidal science, which benefit sectors looking to exploit formations used in household consumer products like coatings and paints. She notes: “My current projects involve fabricating anisotropic colloidal particles… to interrogate the driving forces behind their induced self-assembly and mobility.” Her work ultimately increases the utility of engineered colloidal particles.
Onajite received her degree in chemical engineering from University of Maryland, Baltimore Country, enjoyed research internships, and was a member of University of Maryland’s chapter of the National Society of Black Engineers as an undergraduate. She remains active in the society as a graduate student and recruits for Michigan during NSBE conventions.
She is also the current co-chair of Michigan’s Annual College of Engineering Graduate Symposium, where students across the College of Engineering discuss their research and accomplishments. Onajite organizes and leads the gathering of students, faculty, entrepreneurs, and industry sponsors at the symposium. Outside of graduate school, she often swims, bikes, and takes road trips.