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Group Openings

The Armani lab is located within the Mork Department of Materials Science and Chemical Engineering Department with joint appointments in Electrical Engineering, Biomedical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, and Chemistry.  The lab welcomes researchers with diverse academic backgrounds, including but not limited to:
  • Applied Physics
  • Bioengineering
  • Biology
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Materials Science
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Physics

All students interested in joining the lab should read the following information before contacting Prof. Armani.  Additionally, some commonly asked questions are answered on the FAQ page.

HS Students
MS Students
PhD Students
Post-Docs/Staff Members

The Armani Lab offers one high school student per year the opportunity to work in a research lab setting.  The minimum time commitment is 8 weeks during the summer.  While GPA and course background are relevant, enthusiasm for research and an interest in science and engineering are equally important.  Applications are typically processed through either the USC Bridge program or the ARO HSAP program. If you are interested in applying for this position, please contact Prof. Armani directly.  

The Armani Lab offers undergraduates at all stages in their studies (sophomore through senior) and in all of the disciplines listed above an opportunity to participate in research during the summer and the academic year.  There are no formal requirements (experience, year or major).  Research projects can be part of a directed research course, Merit Research, or can be independent of an academic curriculum.  However, all undergraduate researchers must commit to spending at least one full year in the group, including one summer (10 weeks, paid).

Typically, openings are announced in the summer (May or June), applications are due by mid July, and decisions are made by the start of the fall semester.  Usually, 2-3 undergraduates are hired every year.  Openings are announced on the lab's facebook, twitter, and instagram accounts and through emails from various student advisors. The position details are below. Interested students should submit an application using the online application submission form.

General Description: As a result of the multi-disciplinary nature of the research being pursued in the Armani group, undergraduate research projects are tailored to the undergraduate researcher’s interests within the general scope of the research activities of lab.  Example projects being pursued in the Armani Lab by undergraduate researchers include the synthesis of nanoparticles and polymers and fabrication of integrated optical devices.  Typically, all research is performed in the Michelson Center (MCB). However, due to COVID, currently, all research is being performed remotely.

In developing projects, Prof. Armani first meets with the undergraduate researcher to identify: 1) areas of interest and 2) areas of strength.  Typically, in a follow-up meeting, Prof. Armani assigns a student to a project related to those interests along with a PhD student or post-doctoral scholar mentor.

Undergraduate researchers in the Armani Lab work as part of a team comprised of students and post-docs from a wide range of academic backgrounds (chemistry, physics, electrical engineering, chemical engineering, materials science, biomedical engineering).  However, they are expected to lead their portion of the project, taking and analyzing all data.  Undergraduates have previously been co-authors on publications and presented research at conferences.

Position Details: This position will start in fall 2020 and requires a commitment of at least 12 months, including 10 weeks of full-time (paid) work during the summer.  During the academic year, it is expected that students can commit on average 8hrs/wk to research. Part of this research can be performed for directed research credit (Honors thesis) or for Merit Research. Normally, all undergraduate student researchers are given desks in Michelson. This practice will resume as soon as it is safe to do so.

Requirements: There are no formal requirements (prior experience, year or major, GPA).  However, given the 12 month minimum requirement, preference is given to rising sophomores.

To apply: Applications will be evaluated on a rolling basis until July 1.  A subset of applicants will be selected for an online interview.  All decisions will be made by August 5; however, decisions may be finalized before either date. Therefore, it is advantageous to submit an application early.

To submit an application, complete the online application submission form.  This application consists of a 1-2 page resume and short answers (under 200 words each) to the following questions: 1) Why are you interested in doing research? 2) What area of research most excites you and why? 3) What do you want to do when you graduate?

Similar to undergrad positions, announcements are made sporadically throughout the year as appropriate projects become available. Please monitor twitter and facebook for positions. Additionally, announcements are sent through the GAPP office. 

The Armani Lab only accepts PhD students on the normal admit cycle (apply in the fall and start the following fall).

  • 2020-2021 Academic Year: There are openings for admitted students whose departments have rotation programs (Biomedical Engineering and Chemistry). It is advisable to contact Prof. Armani before the start of the school year.
  • 2021-2022 Academic Year: It is anticipated that there will be positions for the 2021-2022 academic year. Students are only accepted for fall semester start dates (apply in fall 2020 and start in fall 2021).

Students interested in joining the lab must apply through USC Graduate Admissions and should specifically indicate their interest in joining the Armani Lab in the appropriate locations in their application and in their personal statement. Students admitted to the following depts and programs can be directly advised by Prof. Armani:

  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Chemical Engineering
  • Chemistry
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Materials Science
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Systems Biology

Students admitted to other depts within the School of Engineering or the College (e.g. Computer Science, Biology, Physics) can also be advised by Prof. Armani, but the admissions process is more complex. Please alert Prof. Armani if you apply to a dept other than one listed above. In addition, students admitted to the MD/PhD program can be advised by Prof. Armani. However, the admissions process to this program is distinct from the standard PhD admissions process. Please contact Prof. Armani if you are considering this route.

Additional information and advice for students interested in PhD positions is available on this page.  Students are strongly encouraged to read it before emailing Prof. Armani.

There are currently no post-doctoral openings (as of 6/2020). It is not anticipated that there will be openings until fall 2021 (at the earliest) based on current funding available. However, Prof. Armani is always happy to support students interested in pursuing external fellowships (e.g. Fulbright, NIH, CDMRP, or similar).


The Armani lab welcomes visiting PhD Students and scholars from other institutions.  However, due to space limitations in the Armani Lab, we will only host one student or scholar at any given time.  Given this restriction, it is never too early to start planning.  Additionally, for international visitors, there are several protocols established by USC which must be followed.  

In the context of a visitor from another country, due to visa restrictions, it is necessary to plan a visit at least 8 months in advance.  Additionally, if your stipend/salary is being supported by funding from your own institution (which is expected), you must be able to provide proof of health insurance (preferred) or be willing to purchase USC insurance.  Finally, USC does not have housing for visitors.  Therefore, you must find your own housing.  While we can direct you to housing websites, this will be your own responsibility.