Jennifer J. VanAntwerp
- Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1999
- M.S. in Chemical Engineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1997
- B.S. in Chemical Engineering
Michigan State University, 1994
I joined the Calvin faculty in 1999 because my professional passion is undergraduate engineering education. I was new to Christian education at that time, but I have come to deeply appreciate that at Calvin I am able to join with engineering students in discovering how our interests in engineering work fit within a whole life lived in service to God’s kingdom. Since my arrival at Calvin, my husband and I have happily job-shared as chemical engineering professors. This unconventional arrangement has allowed us to each pursue our professions while jointly raising our five children.
My work bridging biology and engineering was continued while consulting with Pfizer, Inc. My professional experience was expanded to environmental and process engineering via consulting work for with Fleis & VandenBrink Engineering. I have also worked as an engineering intern at IBM (semiconductor chip manufacturing) and at Amway (personal and home care product manufacturing).
Research and scholarship
I currently have an active research program focused on engineering career pathways, including workforce retention and diversification. Publications have focused on how gender interacts with engineering culture and career outcomes. I work to empower individual engineers to better understand their career options and how to self-advocate. My research also supports culture change within engineering, so that the future engineering workplace will not be limited to the Dilberts, but instead will allow everyone to thrive.
I feel called to the profession of teaching as much as to the profession of engineering. I have published in the areas of curriculum development, engineering student retention, and gender issues in engineering. As a teaching assistant in Chemical Engineering at the University of Illinois, I completed a Graduate Teaching Certificate program and earned the Outstanding Teaching Assistant Award.
My doctoral research was in protein engineering. Articles I published in my early research career are foundational to the field of yeast surface display as a genetic engineering technique; the results have been applied in various fields. One example is improved antibody binding affinity, which has supported medical applications including the development of more effective chemotherapeutics.
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