Skip to content

Karen Lozano, Ph.D.

Julia Beecherl Endowed Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Director of the Nanotechnology Center and PhD program in Materials Science and Engineering
University of Texas, Rio Grande Valley

Karen Lozano is the Julia Beecherl Endowed Mechanical Engineering Professor at The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley and Founding Director of the UTRGV Nanotechnology Center and PhD program of the College of Engineering and Computer Science (PhD program launched in the Fall of 2023 and first in the College of Engineering). Since 2000, Lozano has creatively combined undergraduate (UG) education with state-of-the-art research projects. Through strategically designed projects and work environment, she has driven an exciting educational/social/economic mobility experience for hundreds of at-risk students, all now leading successful careers in industry, academia, or government labs. She has determinedly led a far-reaching transformation at a once, non-PhD teaching institution. Her efforts have led to 100% retention and graduation rates for over five hundred students working on her NanoTeam. She has successfully opened a pathway to graduate school, over 50 students from her team have pursued PhD degrees in Engineering. She is the recipient of several honors such as member of the National Academy of Engineering,  US Presidential Award for Excellence in Science, Mathematics and Engineering Mentoring (PAESMEM), Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors, TEDx Speaker, and Engineer of the Year by Great Minds in STEM. Lozano’s team, composed primarily of undergraduate students, has published >175 peer reviewed scientific journal articles and >500 proceedings/conference presentations. She is a prolific inventor, and has co-founded two companies, one of which received international awards such as the R&D 100. Her technology coined Forcespinning® is leading industrial production of nanofibers. She outreaches to thousands of K-16 students through summer camps, magic/science shows, and social media. Lozano received a Lone Star EMMY award for her Energy & U TV show. Dr. Lozano earned her BS in Mechanical Engineering from Universidad de Monterrey (UDEM) and MS and PhD degrees from Rice University.