Sunny Shah is Assistant Director and Faculty for the ESTEEM Graduate Program at the University of Notre Dame. In addition he conducts research along with grant writing with Dr. Hsueh Chia Chang in Chemical Engineering. Sunny received his B.S. and Ph.D. from University of California, Davis in Biomedical Engineering. For his doctoral work, his research primarily focused on liver tissue engineering and stem cell differentiation. During his time at UC Davis, Sunny received the competitive NSF EAPSI fellowship to conduct research in S. Korea developing bioactive hydrogels mimicking the human extracellular matrix.
After receiving his degree, Sunny pursued a senior scientist position at Notre Dame to bridge the gap between Chemical Engineering, Biology, Technology Transfer and Commercialization. In addition to his role at ESTEEM, he continues to work on development of a diagnostic platform for detection of pathogens related to food, medical and environmental safety markets. Sunny has also lead commercialization efforts in the Chang laboratory and worked on development of first-generation prototypes for the technology. He has also successfully received internal as well as national grants through NSF and NIH including the NSF I-Corps grant where he underwent a six-week, intense training program in lean startup, customer discovery and business model canvas.
Currently, Sunny teaches a class in the ESTEEM program on the fundamentals of business model canvas, design thinking and prototyping. He also plans to incorporate the lean startup methodology in the students’ capstone thesis project wherein they will try to develop a market for a particular Notre Dame technology.
In his spare time, Sunny enjoys rock climbing, camping and traveling (including spending a night on Mt. Everest base camp) as well as playing racquet sports.