Salil S. Desai, an associate professor in the Department of Industrial & Systems Engineering in the College of Engineering, directs the Integrated Nano & Bio Manufacturing Laboratory. He has been a faculty member at North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University since 2004. Desai specializes in the areas of multiscale-multiphysics modeling, direct-write technologies, nanoimprint lithography, and combinatorial additive manufacturing with applications in biomedical implants, semiconductor electronics and energy devices.

Desai believes that education is the mission of “igniting the spirit of inquiry to transcend knowledge that benefits humankind.” As an engineering educator, he promotes students' ability to think analytically and independently using real-life case studies within a collaborative learning environment. He implements a holistic education plan using a variety of pedagogical and assessment strategies that prepares students for life beyond the classroom. Desai has been instrumental in securing educational/research infrastructure and funding of over $5 million from several agencies, including the National Science Foundation, Department of Defense, Department of Education and private industry for developing innovative curricula in the area of advanced manufacturing.  

Desai’s genuine passion for student learning and engineering mentorship is aptly captured by one of his students: “Undoubtedly, Dr. Desai is one of the most introspective, empathetic, and informative instructors that I have worked with throughout my college career, both undergraduate and doctoral.” Another student notes: “Dr. Desai stresses the impact that engineers have on society and how engineering principles and ethics can be applied to life. He is a role model for any profession.” His Department Chairperson, Tonya Smith-Jackson, echoes this theme: “Dr. Desai’s targeted and sustained mentoring of African American students via different programs has led to a steady pipeline of minority engineers who have gone on to careers in industry, academia and national laboratories.” Over the years he has expanded his teaching role beyond the university to disseminate nano-bio technology concepts and ideas to K-12 students and the general public via several outreach programs, including science shows, live exhibit demonstrations and podcasts for the Natural Science Center of Greensboro.

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