Dr. Eduardo Santillan-Jimenez is the director of the mentoring program, its main point of contact at the University of Kentucky Center for Applied Energy Research (UK CAER) and one of the research mentors at UK CAER. Originally from Mexico, Dr. Santillan-Jimenez joined UK first as an undergraduate research intern and then as a graduate student performing his doctoral research at UK CAER and at the University of Alicante (Spain).
After obtaining his Ph.D. in 2008, he worked as a postdoctoral fellow at Utrecht University (The Netherlands) prior to retuning to UK CAER, where he now holds the position of Principal Research Scientist. His current research focuses on the application of heterogeneous catalysis to the production of renewable fuels and chemicals, with emphasis on the upgrading of algae oil to drop-in hydrocarbon fuels. His synergistic activities include participating in a number of K-20 educational initiatives designed to increase and broaden participation in STEM fields.