Pioneering Champion of Diversity in STEM Reflects on 25-Year Career

Top picture: Supapan Seraphin, right, and some of her students have some fun in the residence hall kitchen preparing vast quantities of Thai curry for hungry students. Retiring UA professor of materials science and engineering Supapan Seraphin leaves generations of students with memories to savor

As the youngest of four daughters raised in Thailand, Supapan Seraphin recalls how local women pitied her mother because she had no sons. In an era when a woman’s place was in the home, they were puzzled by her mother’s resolve that all of her daughters would be educated. 

Seraphin earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in chemistry and energy technology in Thailand before coming to America to earn her doctorate in materials science and engineering from Arizona State University in 1990. 

Upon her retirement from the University in May 2016, Arizona Engineer asked Seraphin about highlights of her UA career and plans for the future. 

University of Arizona College of Engineering