Andrea Armani grew up in Memphis, TN. From there, she moved to Chicago, where she received her BA in physics from the University of Chicago (2001) and her PhD in applied physics with a minor in biology from the California Institute of Technology (2007). After spending a couple additional years at Caltech for her post-doc in biology and chemical engineering, she started her current position as the Fluor Early Career Chair of Engineering and an Assistant Professor of Chemical Engineering and Materials Science and Electrical Engineering-Electrophysics in the Viterbi School of Engineering at the University of Southern California.
Her research group, which includes undergraduate students, PhD students and post-docs, develops new types of optical devices (like lasers) and uses them to study how biological systems work. This research is very interdisciplinary and requires students to draw on all fields of science and engineering.
Armani has received numerous awards, including the ONR Young Investigator Award (2009), the Technology Review Top 35 Innovators under 35 (2009), the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program New Investigator Award (2010), the USC Mellon Mentoring Award for Undergraduate Mentoring (2010), the NIH New Innovator Award (2010), and the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (2009).
She spends her free time with her husband, her two dogs and her cat, and enjoys running in the Los Angeles area.