Kiana Shirzad

Graduate Student




Kiana got her bachelor’s degree from Amirkabir University of Technology (Tehran Polytechnic) in Biomedical Engineering with a focus on Biomaterials. During the years of college, she was also teaching physics at the high school that she graduated from herself. Freshly graduated with a bachelor’s degree, she decided to leave her home country and go to grad school in the United States, and with a long-time interest in properties and performance of materials, she found her way into the Materials and Biomaterials Science and Engineering PhD program at UC Merced, where she got the chance to explore both experimental and computational materials studies. She has had the opportunity of doing mechanistic studies and experimental work on different materials, including reduced graphene oxide nano crumples with high surface area for energy storage applications, impact-adaptive conducting polymers, and shear thickening fluids. Shortly after COVID-19 pandemic, she started a computational project with distinguished Professor Christopher Viney, in which she studies Classical and Non-Classical Nucleation Theories, kinetics of phase transformation, and applications of theories of Materials Science in epidemiology. Like most PhD students, her typical week includes constant literature reading, teaching, coffee, and thesis research; and in her spare time, she enjoys listening to podcasts, learning about behavioral psychology, watching product manufacturing videos, and working out.

Preferred Pronouns


Personal Academic Website

Research/Topics of Interest

Compartmental models
New methods development
Outbreak science
Statistical models
Epidemics modelling
Compartmental moodels

Pathogens/Diseases of Main Interest/Expertise


Countries of Work/Collaboration

United States



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